Moise (Maurice) Kisling was born in Kracow, Poland in 1891. He showed artistic talent as a child and was a gifted draughtsman. His family encouraged him to become an engineer. At fifteen, he studied at the School of Fine Arts in Krakow, where an influential teacher and admirer of Renoir and the French Impressionists, encouraged him to go to Paris.
In 1910, Kisling went to Paris and settled at Montparnasse, where he became part of the artistic community referred to as the School of Paris, which included such artists as Amedeo Modigliani, Georges Braque, Pablo Picasso, Max Jacob and André Salmon. Moise Kisling’s art of the time incorporates French characteristics with ideas from non-French painters. Fellow artists and friends, Andre Derain, Amedeo Modigliani and Marc Chagall, strongly influenced Moise Kisling’s style and use of color. In 1911-1912, he lives in Céret near Braque, Picasso, Juan Gris and the poet Max Jacob. While there he painted landscapes inspired by Cézanne. In 1913, Moise Kisling moved back to Paris and set up a studio in Montparnasse, where he lived and worked for 27 years.
When World War I started, he volunteered for the French Foreign Legion, but was badly wounded in the battle of the Somme in 1915, for which he was awarded French citizenship. Between 1917 and 1920 he lived in the South of France, but soon moved back to Paris. In 1919, he was given an exhibition at the Galerie Druet. Cubism soon began to influence his work. His art had dramatic form and color.
Kisling volunteered for army service again in 1940 for World War II. When the French Army surrendered to Germany, Kisling who was Jewish, moved to the United States and lived in California until 1946. His work was exhibited in New York and Washington, In 1946, he moved back to Paris. Moise Kisling died in South of France in 1953.