Artist, poet, and performance artist best known for his drawings, paintings, and calligraphic works.
He invented an artistic device called the "Dreamachine," which created flickers of light that could still be seen if the viewer's eyes were closed.
He was a close friend of the novelist William S. Burroughs, who made frequent use of the 'cut-up technique'--a method of cutting up and rearranging text to form new meaning-- that Gysin had invented.
His father, a Canadian soldier, was killed in World War I when his son was still an infant.
He joined the Surrealist Group, a Parisian organization of artists that counted Salvador Dali and Pablo Picasso among its ranks.