Third son of banker Leon Frank and of Nanette Loewi daughter of a rabbi from Philadelphia, Jewish decorator Jean-Michel Frank was born in Paris in 1895. His surreal, minimalist aesthetics put him at the forefront of the modern interior. In the 20s, he began introducing unorthodox materials to his interiors and furniture: mica, graphite, shagreen, straw, and parchment, just to name a few in minimalist, interiors full of voids that came to define his signature vocabulary. In September 1939, his company Frank & Chanaux Company closed down for good, and in 1940, he flees from Nazi-occupied France to Argentina. In 1941 he committed suicide in New York, ending one of the more brilliant careers in the history of 20th century interior design.