Paul Klee (Münchenbuchsee, Switzerland, 1879 – Muralto, Switzerland, 1940) was born into a family of musicians. He studied painting in Münich. Upon his return from a year-long trip to Italy, he made a series of prints influenced by the satirical Symoblism of James Ensor and Aubrey Beardsley. He came into contact with the Der Blaue Reiter [The Blue Rider] group and with Robert Delaunay.
A trip to Tunisia in 1914 was decisive in terms of how he subsequently worked with light and color. In communication with nature, he became less interested in reproducing nature in his paintings and focused instead on suggesting and evoking it, using musical polyphony and Asian art as his guide. In 1920 he became a professor at the Bauhaus in Weimar. At this point he began to introduce transparency into his watercolors, which allowed him to associate everyday elements in an unusual way and evoke the world through a new gaze.
In 1930, he took charge of the painting class at the Art Academy in Düsseldorf. However, in 1933, after having to request documentation to certify his Aryan origins, he was suspended from his duties a professor. Shortly after, Klee and his family moved to Bern. From that point, thick linear, monochrome linear symbols became prominent in his work.