I have two equal passions: Creating art and designing interiors. For over 40 years I’ve worked as an interior designer and manual draftsman for large modernist architectural firms, high-end residential interior design firms and custom furniture workshops before starting my own design partnership LEWIS & KLADDER.
I’ve always considered hand drafting on crisp white vellum with graphite pencils a creative artistic experience like no other. In the 1970’s I chose not to learn computer aided design and drafting in favor of manual drawings to communicate form, space and construction details directly from the mind’s eye. I’ve always made time to create art throughout my design career.
Although I’ve had gallery representation my interior design career never allowed me to fully develop as an artist. In 2014 I moved from San Francisco to Palm Springs, California with the intention of becoming a full time artist. Desert living allowed me to fully engage in experimentation through practice, contemplation, patience and meditation to evolve my artistic visions and creations. The desert’s sun allows clear bright light that allows color to be radiant. I’ve added more color to my work than ever before.
My works of art reflect a career as a designer/draftsman as I continue to use an old fashioned T-square, drafting tools, vellum, and paper with graphite pencils to create art. I often use repurposed imagery from books, magazines and printed media as I see that printed paper will soon become a thing of the past. My works are centered by my love of graphic design, traditional African arts, print media, sculptural forms, abstraction and motifs with positive/negative space relationships.
As an interior designer an art collection can be the first inspiration that drives the overall interior or the last thing added to give character to living/working spaces by pulling the design together.
All of my works of art are envisioned in interiors as I conceptualize and create. My visions are realized through mixed media works, paintings, collage, and drawings on canvas.
I’m largely a self-taught artist/designer I don't have a degree in fine arts or interior design. I’ve learned by being mentored, taking art and design classes, interning and professional experience.
Otis Art Institute - Life Drawing
Los Angeles City College - Art History & Fine Arts Classes
Interior Designers Guild - Interior Design, Design History
Engineering Societies Classes - Architectural Drafting
UC Berkeley Extension - Interior Design, Design Drawing, History of Interior Design
Otis-Parsons - Environmental Design Classes
Palm Springs Art Museum - Art Education Volunteer, Second Sundays , Event for visitors of all ages to participate in making art inside of the museum.
Palm Springs Art Museum - Architecture & Design Museum, Volunteer/Host/Guide on an as needed basis within a renovated historic mid-century building
Artists Council - Coachella Valley, Volunteer and participant in Artists Council events
MOAD (Museum of the African Diaspora) - San Francisco, Volunteered as needed for MOAD cultural events
Mask/Face Project - Sonoma County, Toured schools and community centers with my collection of African tribal masks and my drawings that were inspired by them. I designed a program that asked students to feel the shapes of their faces. We then created two painted self-portraits. One portrait to take home and another portrait that was used mask like used to make a large paper quilt for their school.
Arthaus Gallery - San Francisco, I was represented as a guest artist for 21 years.
Palm Springs Art Museum, Palm Desert - Metamorphis, Artists Council Inaugural Members Exhibit
UC Riverside, Palm Desert - Creative Expression,
Artists Council member exhibit
Joshua Tree Art Gallery, JTAG Expo, Juried group exhibit, (My entry won Second Best In Show award and prize.
UC Riverside, Palm Desert - Geometry 101,
Artists Council member exhibit
The Reclaimed Room - San Francisco, The Living Show, Two Artist Exhibit. Art and home furnishings made with repurposed, recycled, reclaimed materials in the spirit of transformation by creative reuse.
Bayview Community Art Gallery - San Francisco, Volunteered as a founding member, Developed Interior design through donations from interior design sources.
My "The 2008 Candidate Series" of 28 mixed media works using Barack Obama's image as the foreground to African American historical context images were first exhibited at the community gallery. https://www.samuelfleminglewisart.com/untitled-gallery#1
Gensler, Global Design & Architectural Firm, San Francisco - Solo Exhibit of Drawings in the firms lobby/exhibit space.
The California Museum - Santa Rosa, CA, Local artists group exhibit.