Sam Francis was born in 1923 in San Mateo, California. From 1929 to 1941 he goes to school in San Mateo and begins to attend medical school at the University of California in Berkely. In 1943, he goes to the US Army and serves as fighter pilot in the air force. At the end of the Second World War he suffers serious injury. During his recovery he starts painting and decides to become an artist. He starts to study art history at the University of California. He then moves to Paris, where he gets to know Al Held, Kimber Smith, Joan Mitchell and Alberto Giacometti through Jean-Paul Riopelle. Afterwards he lives in New York and in Bern. Numerous solo-exhibition follow in Paris, London, Bern and the USA. In 1962, he moves to Santa Monica in California an works on the “Blue Balls”. At the same time he often stays in Tokyo. In 1968, he gets an honorary Ph.D. from the University of California. He is represented in many exhibitions in America as well as in Europe. In 1979 a retrospective of his works on paper takes place in the Institute of contemporary Art in Boston. The exhibition will also be shown in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Manila, Korea and Japan. in 1994, a great retrospective exhibition is hold at the Gallery Proarta in Zürich. In the same year, Sam Francis dies in Santa Monica.