Oskar Kokoschka

Oskar Kokoschka studied art in Vienna, entering the Vienna School of Arts and Crafts in 1905, and being expelled in 1908 for his Expressionist drawings, which were found shocking. For the next six years he worked as a designer and illustrator, painting also a famous series of paintings of actors and writers. After being severely wounded in 1916, he settled in Dresden, where from 1920 to 1924 he taught at the Academy, developing his style in which the brilliant and symbolic use of colour was more important than figurative accuracy. He then travelled widely throughout Europe and northern Africa, but the rise of Nazism forced his departure first to Prague and then to London, where he became a British citizen. In 1954, Kokoschka retired to Villeneuve on Lake Geneva.