Happy Birthday Ilya Bolotowsky!! The American painter was born in 1907 in St. Petersburg, Russia. He was a leading abstract painter of the early twentieth century, in New York City, having immigrated to America in 1923. Mondrian’s influence can be seen in his early work, but he did move away from the primary colors and right angles so familiar in the aforementioned artist’s paintings. He attended the National Academy of Design and later taught at Black Mountain College. Bolotowsky was a member of the group The Ten, known for their rebellion against the strict guidelines of the Academy. He was also a founder of the American Abstract Artists, a group who sought to bring understanding of abstract art to the public.