University of Rochester

Artist Sam Gilliam Talks about his Work at Two Events March 30

March 21, 2006

First a conversation with the artist and later an illustrated lecture by him will connect Rochester audiences with the work of Sam Gilliam, internationally known artist and color field painter, on Thursday, March 30.

A "Conversation with the Artist" will be held at 1 p.m. in the Gowen Room of Wilson Commons on the University of Rochester's River Campus. The Frederick Douglass Institute for African and African-American Studies and the Graduate Program in Visual and Cultural Studies at the University of Rochester will host the free event with co-sponsorship from the Memorial Art Gallery, the Print Club of Rochester, and Rochester Institute of Technology.

At 7:30 p.m., Gilliam will take the stage at the Memorial Art Gallery, 500 University Ave., for an illustrated lecture, "Early Carousels to Flat Color." A limited number of tickets will be available at the door or can be purchased in advance at the Gallery Store. Prices are $12; $8 for MAG members, Print Club of Rochester members, and University of Rochester and RIT faculty; $5 for college students; and $3 for University of Rochester and RIT students.

Gilliam was born in Tupelo, Miss., and attended the University of Louisville where he received his bachelor's degree in fine art and his master's degree in painting. His early work in the 1960s and 70s on stretched and then draped canvas brought distinction to the Washington Color School. He has been called one of the most important and inventive colorists of the last 30 years. Now into his fifth decade as an artist, Gilliam is creating multimedia installations characterized by bright stains and metallic materials.

The artist has earned a long list of public and private commissions, grants, awards, honorary doctorates, and exhibitions at such institutions as the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum of American Art. He continues to work in his studio in Washington, D.C.

As part of his Rochester visit, Gilliam will speak at Rochester Institute of Technology on Friday, March 31. He'll lecture in room A172 of the Frank E. Gannett Building. His RIT lecture is co-sponsored by the School of Art and RIT's Commission for Promoting Pluralism.

For more information on his River Campus talk, contact the Frederick Douglass Institute at (585) 275-7235 or the Gallery Store at the University's Memorial Art Gallery at (585) 473-7720, ext. 3034 about his evening lecture.

Note to editors: Images of Mr. Gilliam or his work in the collection of the Memorial Art Gallery are available for download at (username: MAG; password: NEWS). Or, they can be e-mailed to you. Please call (585) 275-4128 or e-mail