Born in the United States, Lyonel Feininger moved to Germany in 1887 to pursue a career in music. Instead, he concentrated on art, supporting himself as a cartoonist while studying in Berlin and Paris. Feininger's contact with the Cubists, Robert Delaunay, and the Blaue Reiter group had a profound effect on his art. He developed a distinctive style characterized by a geometric angularity that melds abstraction and representation. As a founding member of the Bauhaus School of Art in 1919, he taught drawing and painting and supervised the graphic workshop and printing press until the school was closed in 1933. In 1937, the political climate in Germany prompted him to return to the United States. There he taught art and continued painting, focusing on favourite themes such as the sea and ships.