The Dutch painter, sculptor, designer and writer Karel Appel studied in the Rijksakademie, Amsterdam, between 1940 and 1943. His first works bear witness to a strong interest in German Expressionism and, above all, the work of Van Gogh. Around 1945, Appel found inspiration in Matisse, Picasso and the Paris School, which was a decisive influence on his art up until 1948. In this year he founded, together with Constant and Corneille, the Experimental Group in Holland and co-founded the CoBrA international movement in Paris. In 1950, he moved to Paris and, in 1957, travelled to New York for the first time. In the mid 50s, he acquired a considerable worldwide reputation and held countless one-man shows. In 1960, he received the International Guggenheim Prize and, in the following year, a Dutch journalist made a film about his life and work. He took part in Documenta 2 and 3 as well as writing the script and designing the sets for the ballet "Can We Dance a Landscape?", at the Paris Opera in 1987. In 1989, he had five major retrospectives at Japanese museums. 1954: wins UNESCO prize at the Biennale of Venice. 1959: wins international prize for painting at the São Paulo Biennale .