Karel Appel, the Dutch painter, printmaker, sculptor and ceramist, was born in Amsterdam in 1921. His first solo exhibition was held at at Het Beerenhuis, Groningen, in 1946. He founded the Experimental Group in Amsterdam in 1948, contributed to the periodical Reflex, and took an active part in the COBRA group from 1948-51. In 1950, his paintings became more thickly painted and with swirling forms, with grotesque imagery of animals, monsters and the human figure. The artist was awarded the UNESCO prize at the 1954 Venice Biennale and the Guggenheim International Award in 1960. In 1968, he began to make relief paintings, followed by painted sculptures in wood and polyester, and later in aluminium.