“The Music of Color: Sam Gilliam, 1967–1973” remains on view at Kunstmuseum Basel until 30 September, 2018. Sam Gilliam (b. 1932, Tupelo, Mississippi), an artist associated with the Washington Color School, is renowned for his suspended and draped paintings. This exhibition, presented to coincide with Art Basel, doesn’t disappoint.
Moving to Washington, D.C., in 1962, the artist loosened his painterly approach over the course of the decade as he began creating works with thinned acrylic paint. By the late 1960s, Gilliam was soaking canvases in paint and folding them in order to spread the pigment and leave physical imprints of his process. He began to make paintings without stretchers in 1968, suspending and draping colour-stained canvases from walls, ceilings, and sawhorses. The folded, wrapped, and knotted forms of these works bring to attention the sculptural characteristics of their materials, while maintaining their status as paintings. “The Music of Color” is a must-see exhibition.