Fernand Léger was born in 1881 at Argentan, Normandy.
After an apprenticeship in architecture at Caen, he entered the École des Arts Décoratifs in Paris in 1903.
After destroyingmost of his early works, in 1908 he began to develop a personal style, influenced byCubism and Picasso’s work.In 1914, he was called up and served during the First World War in the trenches ofthe Ardennes and Verdun; it was an experience that was to mark him for life.
At theend of the war, he worked on painting, murals, tapestries, mosaics, sculpture andceramic; he also collaborated in sets and costumes for theatrical shows. In 1924, heproduced an avant-garde film called “Ballet mécanique”. And he also worked forballet, being responsible for the costumes and sets of Darius Milhaud’s “La créationdu monde”.
His art enjoyed increasing success in various exhibitions in France, Switzerland andthe United States. Between 1940 and 1945, he moved to New York, where heproduced a number of huge mural paintings.
He died on 17th August 1955 at Gif-sur-Yvette in France.