Paul Klee

1879 - 1940 · Switzerland

Artist biography

Paul Klee was a Swiss-born visual artist whose highly personal artistic expression was influenced by Expressionism, Cubism and Surrealism. Described as an outsider and Modern art guru, Paul Klee was distinguished by an abstract style and compositions which combine cubist forms with a great role given to colour.

Born on December 18, 1879 in Münchenbuchsee, Switzerland, Klee began studying at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich and exhibited his first works Inventions between 1903 and 1905. Professor at the Bauhaus, Klee theorizes modern art and deconstructs the use of colour in representations of landscapes. His friendship with Wassily Kandinsky nurtured Klee’s style, which defied categorisation. The inspiration of surrealism in his body of work marked some of the first efforts to employ art as a medium to implement philosophical content. Paul Klee challenged the traditional separation between writing and visual art with exploring the meaning of symbols in his paintings.

Klee died on June 29, 1940 in Muralto-Locarno, Switzerland. He is undoubtedly a major figure in the history of art both for his remarkable work and for the heritage of his influence. Paul Klee paintings are in the permanent collections of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., the Tate Gallery in London, and the Kunstmuseum Basel, among others.

Paul Klee

  • Artworks in Collections 1
  • Exhibitions 4

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