The Prints of Sean Scully

Media - 2001.79.28 - SAAM-2001.79.28_1 - 53686

Sean Scully, Planes of Light, 1991

Sean Scully (b. 1945), an internationally acclaimed artist with studios in New York City, Barcelona, and Munich, has been making prints for more than 30 years and considers these works to be as significant as his paintings. His prints, like his paintings, are richly layered and convey Scully’s distinctive approach to abstraction based on relationships.


"The Prints of Sean Scully" presents for the first time at the museum a selection of 57 works from a master set of prints that was acquired in 2001. Scully chose the Smithsonian American Art Museum as the only museum in the Unites States to receive a complete master set. The artist's prints range from large-scale, monumental compositions reminiscent of the paintings to smaller, more intimate expressions of the artist's ideas. Although certain themes recur in both his paintings and prints, Scully considers them independent and complementary. Joann Moser, senior curator for graphic arts, selected the prints and illustrated books featured in the exhibition.

Visiting Information

May 18, 2007 October 8, 2007
Open Daily, 11:30 a.m.–7:00 p.m
Free Admission

Tour Schedule

Naples Museum of Art
Naples, FL
November 10, 2007 January 13, 2008
The Minneapolis Institute of Art
Minneapolis, MN
March 1, 2008 May 4, 2008
The Hyde Collection
Glens Falls, NY
September 5, 2008 November 2, 2008


"The Prints of Sean Scully" is organized and circulated by the Smithsonian American Art Museum with support from Gisele Galante Broida, Don Brown, Ruth Holmberg and Norfolk Southern Corporation. The exhibition’s tour is supported in part by the C.F. Foundation, Atlanta and the William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment Fund.


The catalogue raisonné of Scully's prints is published by the Institute of Modern Art in Valencia, Spain. The text features an essay by curator Joann Moser.


Sean Scully
born Dublin, Ireland 1945

Scully was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1945 but was raised in London, where his family moved in 1949.