Matisse scholar and Brooklyn College, City University of New York professor of art history. Flam was born to Max Flam and Rose Leila (Silverberg) Flam in New Jersey. He attended Rutgers University, where he recieved a B.A. in 1961. He continued at Columbia University granted an M.A., in 1963 and began teaching at Rutgers (through 1966). He entered New York University for his Ph.D. During this time he taught at University of Florida, Gainesville, as an assistant professor, until 1969. That year he recieved his Ph.D., from NYU.