Arshile Gorky (1904 – 1948) was an Armenian-American painter who had a seminal influence on Abstract Expressionism. In 1915, the boy and his mother and three sisters escaped Lake Van and he travelled to the United States as a sixteen year old. He spent most his life as a national of the United States. Along with Mark Rothko, Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning, Gorky has been hailed as one of the most powerful American painters of the 20th century. As such, his works were often speculated to have been informed by the suffering and loss he experienced in the Armenian Genocide.