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French painter, lithographer, and poet, born in Algeria of Jewish-Berber ancestry and active mainly in Paris, where he settled in 1930. Atlan took a degree in philosophy at the Sorbonne and was self-taught as an artist. He began painting in 1941 but was arrested by the German occupying forces in 1942 because of his activities in the Resistance; he saved his life by feigning madness and was confined to an asylum (where he was allowed to paint) until the Liberation of Paris in 1944.

Text Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)