William N. Copley (1919–1996), aka CPLY, was an American artist mostly known as a painter and writer, but also worked as gallerist and publisher and was an avid collector. He studied English at Yale University before enrolling in the army during the Second World War. After the war, he briefly worked as a reporter before opening a gallery in Los Angeles in 1948 together with John Ployardt, an animator for Walt Disney Studios who had introduced him to Surrealist artists, including Man Ray and Marcel Duchamp. The latter became a close friend and a strong influence on Copley, who closed the gallery after only one year and dedicated himself entirely to painting from then on. He moved to Paris in 1949, where he lived until 1962–63, before moving back to the United States.