Ed Moses was born in Long Beach, California, in 1926. He enlisted in the Navy at 17 and served as a surgical technician during World War II. After the war, Moses studied at Long Beach City College before transferring to UCLA to train under the expressionist painter Rico Lebrun. In 1958, Moses had his first exhibition of abstract paintings at the Ferus Gallery. Since then, Moses has constantly altered his aesthetic, experimenting with assemblage, installation, and printmaking, and exploring new techniques and materials.