The subject matter of Frank Sampson’s works, while easily recognizable, resist easy explanation. He prefers that we abandon the search for meaning in his paintings, encouraging us instead to lose ourselves in his visually complex and richly colored canvases. In his works, flora, fauna, and people live in harmonious yet puzzling, enchanting, and sometimes disquieting environments in truly magical and mysterious fantasy worlds.
About Frank Sampson
Frank Sampson’s works occupy the world that exists between reality and fantasy, drawing influence from mythology, biblical stories, theater, circus, and sport. His surreal, dreamlike, and fantastical paintings are multilayered and include all animal, human, and shapeshifting creatures. Sampson was first inspired to become an artist by his mother who told him captivating stories filled with animals and fantasy. He earned his BA from Concordia College in 1950 and his MFA from the University of Iowa in 1952. A celebrated artist and educator, Sampson considers his Fulbright Fellowship in Belgium a highlight of his long career. He began teaching at the University of Colorado Boulder in 1961 and retired as a professor emeritus of fine arts in 1990. Sampson’s work has been exhibited by museums across the United States, including the Arvada Center, BMoCA, the Denver Art Museum, and the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis. His work is in the permanent collections of the Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, the Des Moines Art Center, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, and many other museums.
About Tom Carter, Guest Curator
Tom Carter earned his undergraduate degree in art history and painting and drawing and his MA in art history from the University of Colorado Boulder, where he studied with Frank Sampson. In 1976 he began his PhD in modern art history at The Institute of Fine Arts, New York University. Carter did not complete his PhD and instead moved to Seattle where he managed an art gallery and opened a stone fabrication business. He later became a fine arts and antiques appraiser in Washington, California, and Colorado. Carter returned to Boulder in 2006 and currently lives in Denver.
About BMoCA at Frasier
BMoCA at Frasier is a collaboration between Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art and Frasier Retirement Community. Curated by BMoCA, this series of exhibitions in The Canyons Gallery is an extension of the museum’s exhibition schedule. Each exhibition is complemented by a series of education programs.