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(b Moscow, 22 Nov. [4 Dec.] 1866; d Neuilly-sur-Seine, 13 Dec. 1944). Russian-born painter, printmaker, designer, teacher, and writer, who became a German citizen in 1927 and a French citizen in 1939, one of the most important figures in the development of abstract art, as a theoretician as well as a practitioner. He abandoned a promising university career teaching law, partly under the impact of an exhibition in Moscow of French Impressionists, at which one of Monet's Haystack pictures made a powerful impression on him, and in 1896 he moved to Munich to study painting.

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