Francis Picabia, French painter, 1879-1953

Francis Picabia, born Francis-Marie Martinez de Picabia, was a French avant-garde painter, poet and typographist. After experimenting with Impressionism and Pointillism, Picabia became associated with Cubism. His highly abstract planar compositions were colourful and rich in contrasts. In 1916, while in Barcelona and within a small circle of refugee artists, he started his Dada periodical "391". He was one of the early major figures of the Dada movement in the United States and in France. Picabia continued his involvement in the Dada movement through 1919 in Zürich and Paris, before breaking away from it after developing an interest in Surrealist art.