A watchmaker's son from Tuchow, Poland, Mordecai Ardon was the eldest of 12 children of Alexander and Elisheva Bronstein. A devout Jew and a master craftsman, Alexander Bronstein intended for his son to follow in his footsteps. Ardon had different plans and became a student of the Weimar Bauhaus school. In Weimar, he studied under Paul Klee, Johanne Itten, Lyonel Feininger and Wassily Kandinsky. Ardon described his experiences at the school: "We learned from them by virtue of their inspiring presence. Each of them had his own approach for the young artist and each enriched the student in a special way." (M. Vishny, Mordecai Ardon, New York, 1973, p.19).
Ardon was forced to flee Germany in the Spring of 1933. Affiliated with left wing groups he recognized the imminent danger. On the advice of a friend who was able to arrange travelling papers for the artist, Ardon escaped to Eretz Israel. Ardon described his arrival in Israel: "Shipwrecked, I landed in Jerusalem" (Ibid, p. 23). Ardon's work in Europe consisted mainly of portraits and still lives. Only in Israel did he begin to paint landscapes. Jerusalem and the Israeli landscape would become a major preoccupation for the artist in the years to come.
Professor A. Ronen has described "The light in Ardon's paintings is not an outer physical entity, but an expression of the inner light of his poetical vision" (Venice, Ardon, XXXIV Biennale, 1968). 'Ardon's interest in colourism and colour-techniques is inseparable from his artistic credo. Ardon conceived colour as possessing an absolute aesthetic and spiritual value. He therefore always strove to create the most beautiful colours possible, the deepest blue, the warmest red, the most shining yellow, the most saturated green'. Colour, rhythm and the lack of literal reference distinguish Ardon's work from many of his Israeli contemporaries.