Born in 1903, he graduated at the School of Fine Arts in Bucharest in 1921. Four years later, after a first stay in Paris, he got to know the art of Giorgio de Chirico and the avant-garde. In 1932 he moved definitively to Paris and, thanks to Yves Tanguy, came into contact with the Surrealists and produced his first paintings with the symbol of the enucleated eye, almost a prefiguration of the accident that saw him involved in 1938, in which he lost his left eye.
After 1940, during the Nazi occupation of France, the precarious conditions forced him to change technique and paint with wax colors. This new phase of his production coincided with the confluence of themes derived from alchemy and esotericism. In 1947 he took part in the Surrealist International Exhibition at the Maeght Gallery, after which he left the group and dedicated himself to the production of mainly monochrome works. He died in 1966 of a pulmonary embolism and was buried in the Parisian cemetery of Montmartre.