Hard Edge painting wasn’t always the term used to describe California’s first fully native Modernist art movement. A genre unto itself, critics and artists alike struggled to find an appropriate moniker to characterize the wholly new form of geometric abstraction that emerged on the West Coast during the late 1950s.
The upcoming February 23, 2014 Modern Art & Design Auction features the acrylic painting Live by the pioneering multimedia painter Sam Gilliam. Gilliam was a pivotal player in the Washington School Movement of the 1950s and 60s, and made considerable contributions to the Color Field Movement. In 1968, Sam Gilliam was the first recognized artist to stop using canvas stretchers as a means of reinforcement in favor of the solitary, painted, raw surface. In the 1970s, Gilliam was determined to work with beveled canvas stretchers to facilitate the idea of the painting as a dimensional object, resulting in the vibrant work, Live from 1972.