Born in La Charité sur Loire, France and died at Louveciennes, France. After intermittent studies between 1919 and 1924 at the École des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, Jean lived in New York during 1924-25. He worked as a a textile designer, acquiring skills he would use upon his return to France. As early as 1920, he encountered Modern Art in the magazine Esprit nouveau, but the aesthetic rules espoused by Le Corbusier and Amédée Ozenfant were too systematic for his emotional needs. Very early on, he completed paintings in which poetic invention was unleashed. In 1932, he met Andre Breton and his friends. Until 1950, Jean took part in Surrealism's activities and exhibitions, notably the International Surrealist Exhibition in London and Fantastic Art, Dada, Surrealism in New York, both in 1936, and the 1938 Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme in Paris, 1938. He helped Oscar Dominguez devise the method for decalcomania, which resulted in a range of images that suggest the first moments in which the world was created. They collaborated on a series of decalcomanias entitled Grisou (1936). Between 1938 and 1945, Jean lived in Budapest and met the Hungarian philosopher and psychologist Arpad Mezei with whom we published several theoretical works, one of which is dedicated to Lautréamont, and also The History of the Surrealist painting.