Leo Breuer (1893-1975) was born in Bonn. Although he started his artistic career as a New Objectivity painter, he is today best remembered for his abstract art. Breuer studied at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Cologne between 1912 and 1915 when he was drafted to fight in the First World War. He soon was taken prisoner of war and spent almost four years in Russian captivity. Released in 1918, he continued his studies in Cologne and Kassel, and became a member of the leftist artist group Rheinische Sezession in 1928.
Leo Breuer, The Coal Carrier, 1931
Between 1930 and 1934 Breuer had a studio in Berlin. After the Nazis had declared his art as "degenerate", Breuer emmigrated to Brussels where he worked as a restorer until 1940. After the German occupation of Belgium, Breuer was arrested and sent to the notorious Gurs internment camp in Southern France. After the liberation of France, in 1944, Breuer moved to Paris where he joined the Salon des Réalités Nouvelles. Since 1952 he maintained studios in Paris and Bonn. Breuer died 1975 in Bonn.