Latvian-born American artist associated with Abstract Expressionism and Color Field Painting; known for 'Four Darks in Red.' Considered among the United States' most famous post-World War II artists along with Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning.
He began working in New York's garment district in 1923. His passion for art was sparked after seeing students from the Art Students League of New York drawing a model.
His late period works included "No. 3/No. 13 (Magenta, Black, Green on Orange)," which was displayed at the Museum of Modern Art, and "No. 61 (Rust and Blue)," exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
He emigrated from Latvia to the United States at age 10 and later attended Yale University on a scholarship. He was married to Edith Sachar from 1932 to 1943 and Mary Alice Beistle from 1945 to 1969. He had a son named Christopher and a daughter named Kate.
He was greatly influenced by the work of the German philosopher, Friedrich Nietzsche.