Hans Hofmann was born in Weissenberg, Bavaria in 1880. After the death of his father, he began to study painting at Moritz Heymann’s art school in Munich and then for ten years in Paris, where he met such influential painters as Matisse, Picasso, and Bracques. During the First World War, Hofmann opened the Hans Hofmann School of Fine Arts in Munich. As Nazi oppression grew during the 1930’s, Hofmann relocated to New York City, where he opened the Hans Hofmann School of Fine Arts in Manhattan.
Already known as an influential teacher, Hofmann eventually came to be recognized as an important artist in his own right. He exhibited his paintings at Galerie Maeght in Paris, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Whitney Museum, and the Museum of Modern Art. After his death in 1966, his work continues to be exhibited in the permanent collections of museums including the Metropolitan Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, the Boston Museum of Fine Art, and the Tate Gallery. Former Hofmann students include: Lillian Orlowsky, Wolf Kahn, Paul Resika, Irving Kershner, Robert DeNiro, Sr., and Frank Stella.