Painter, printmaker and theatre designer, born in South of France, 1919. Whilst at school he became very interested in prehistoric and Roman art and began painting. In 1938 he enrolled in the École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts, Paris. In 1946, having served in the military during World War II, Soulages returned to Paris and set up a small studio in Courbevoie and began painting in abstract. He exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants in 1947.From 1949 to 1952 Soulages carries out three commissions for stage sets and ballets . It is also during in this period that he starts print making, etching with the Lacourière workshop. He has exhibited widely since his first solo show at the Galerie Lydia Conti, Paris, in 1949. His first retrospective was presented at the Museum Folkwang, Essen, West Germany; Gemeente Museum, The Hague; and Kunsthaus Zürich, Zurich (1960–61), and his most recent took place at the Musée national d’art moderne, Centre Pompidou, Paris (2009–10). In 2001 Soulages was the first living artist to exhibit at the State Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg. He lives and works in Paris.