Jean Fautrier, born in 1898 in Paris, was a painter and sculptor, one of the exponents of Tachism movement and a protagonist of the French Art Informel. At fourteen he started to study at the Royal Academy of London and then moved on to the Slade School. In 1917, he was enlisted in the army and in 1920 he settled in Paris. In 1927 Fautrier became close and worked with Paul Guillaume, but dissolved the contract in 1930 because his artistic vision passed from the figurative to the informal, of which he will become one of the leading exponents in the second post-war period.
In 1934, he left Paris and lived as a ski instructor and hotelier in Haute-Savoie. In 1940 he returned to Pris and in 1942 he presented figurative paintings in the exhibition at the Poyet gallery. Later he created the series Hostages, approximately thirty works executed from 1942 to 1945, which were presented at the Drouin gallery in the autumn of 1945. After the success and force of this exhibition, Jean Fautrier decided to dedicate himself to the creation of graphic works and of the illustrations for Gallimard. He travelled to Italy, Spain, Portugal, Scotland, USA, Belgium and Holland. He will return to painting in 1954, with the series Les Objects and Nudes, and with an exhibition at the Galerie Rove Droite in Paris. His consecration took place within few years, in 1959 he participated to Documenta which was followed in 1960 by the Grand Prix at the XXX Venice Biennale, ex aequo with Hans Hartung.
He is esteemed and admired by critics, intellectuals and poets, among others Giulio Argan, Palma Bucarelli, Giuseppe Ungaretti (friend and traveling companion in Japan and in the Middle East) and Francesco Arcangeli.
In 1961, he received the International Grand Prix at the Tokyo Biennale, followed by solo and retrospective exhibitions in Swiss, European and other world museums.
He died in Châtenay-Malabry in 1964.