Lucas Samaras

Lucas Samaras (born 1936) is a Greek-American artist.[1]

Lucas Samaras
'Photo-Transformation', Polaroid SX-70 print by Lucas Samaras, 1973, Getty Museum.jpg
Self-portrait, Photo-Transformation, Polaroid SX-70 print, 1973, Getty Museum
Born1936 (age 86–87)
EducationRutgers University
Known forPhotography, Sculpture, Printmaking

Early life and educationEdit

Samaras was born in Kastoria, Greece. He studied at Rutgers University on a scholarship, where he met Allan Kaprow and George Segal.


Samaras participated in Kaprow's "Happenings," and posed for Segal's plaster sculptures.[2] Claes Oldenburg, in whose Happenings he also participated, later referred to Samaras as one of the "New Jersey school," which also included Kaprow, Segal, George Brecht, Robert Whitman, Robert Watts, Geoffrey Hendricks and Roy Lichtenstein. Samaras previously worked in painting, sculpture, and performance art, before beginning work in photography. He subsequently constructed room environments that contained elements from his own personal history.[3] His "Auto-Interviews" were a series of text works that were "self-investigatory" interviews.[4] The primary subject of his photographic work is his own self-image, generally distorted and mutilated. He has worked with multi-media collages, and by manipulating the wet dyes in Polaroid photographic film to create what he calls "Photo-Transformations".

Samaras represented Greece at the 53rd International Art Exhibition, The Venice Biennale (June 7- November 22, 2009) with the multi-installation "PARAXENA" in the Greek Pavilion in the Giardini.[5]

Samaras has been the subject of several portraits by Chuck Close, in media including painting, daguerreotype, and tapestry.[6]

Samaras' sculpture Stiff Box 12 has been outside the University of Michigan Museum of Art since 1997.[7]

Art marketEdit

Samaras has been represented by Pace Gallery since 1965.[8]


Lucas Samaras in 1982
  1. ^ "Lucas Samaras (American, born Greece, 1936) (Getty Museum)". The J. Paul Getty in Los Angeles. Retrieved 2021-08-09.
  2. ^ Stiles, p. 290.
  3. ^ Id.
  4. ^ See Stiles, p. 349, for "Another Autointerview," 1971.
  5. ^ "Lucas Samaras at the 53rd International Art Exhibition la Biennale di Venezia / E-flux". Archived from the original on 2009-05-31. Retrieved 2009-06-04.
  6. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2011-04-27.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link) Stone, Nick. Chuck Close: Lucas (press release). Retrieved 4-27-2011.
  7. ^ "Exchange: Stiff Box 12". Retrieved 2020-09-25.
  8. ^ LUCAS SAMARAS: Filthy Artist, Not a Prince. 032c, December 1, 2009.

General referencesEdit

  • Kristine Stiles and Peter Selz, editors. Theories and Documents of Contemporary Art: A Sourcebook of Artists' Writings. University of California Press, 1996.
  • Jo Applin, '"Materialized Secrets": Samaras, Hesse and the Small Scale Box', Object, no. 4, 2002

Further readingEdit

  • Goysdotter, Moa (2013). Impure Vision: American Staged Art Photography of the 1970s. Lund: Nordic Academic Press. ISBN 9789187351006.

External linksEdit