California born artist Sam Francis was
a second generation Abstract Expressionist painter who incorporated influences of Jungian
psychology, Buddhism, and Japanese aesthetics into the urban and angst-ridden painting style
of the New York School. After living abroad in Paris and Japan, he settled in Los Angeles,
where he founded a fine art print press, the Litho Shop, a book press, Lapis Press, and
painted prolifically until his death in 1994. The papers document his exhibitions, business
ventures, friendships, five marriages, and childhood.
Sam Francis was born in 1923 in San Mateo, California. He studied botany and psychology at
the University of California, Berkeley, but dropped out before graduating to enlist in the
Army during World War II. Injured in a training flight crash in 1944, he was a convalescent
for several years, during which time he began to paint as a form of distraction. When he
recovered he returned to college, studying painting under Bay Area artists David Park and
238.73 Linear Feet
(298 boxes, 58 flatfile folders, 3 rolls, 25 videocassettes, 9
DVDs, 15 films, 4 audio reels)
Contact Library Reproductions and Permissions.
Open for use by qualified researchers with the following exceptions. Audio visual materials
are unavailable until reformatted. Box 193 is sealed until 2086.