Piet Mondrian was a Dutch artist known for non-representational paintings that consisted of colored blocks bordered by thick, black lines. He was born Pieter Cornelis Mondriaan in the Dutch city of Amersfoort in 1872.
Mondrian studied in Paris during the early 20th century, where his artwork was influenced by the cubist artists Picasso and Braque. Other styles that would later influence his work were Impressionism and Luminism.
When Mondrian returned to the Netherlands in 1914, he found further artistic influence from the abstract artists Bart van der Leck and Theo van Doesburg. Mondrian and Doesburg founded an artistic movement known as De Stijl, which translates to "The Style," through which he published essays detailing his emerging artistic theory. Mondrian believed that his paintings represented the underlying spirituality of nature. His most famous paintings were completed in the 1930s, including the piece entitled "Composition II in Red, Blue and Yellow" that he created in 1930.
Mondrian fled Paris to London at the outbreak of the Second World War, later migrating to New York City, where he contributed both work and theory to Manhattan's Museum of Modern Art. While in New York, Mondrian succumbed to pneumonia, dying on February 1, 1944. His work influenced the emerging movements of Bauhaus style and Minimalism.