Carmel Magazine

Summer/Fall 2020

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Page 118 of 171

C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S U M M E R / F A L L 2 0 2 0 117 Collection of Paula and Terry Trotter, Trotter Galleries, Inc. William Ritschel, "Pt. Lobos - Bit of California Coast," circa 1927 A n LA Times art critic wrote of Ritschel, "Few marine painters know the sea as Ritschel does. You feel in his work the beauty and danger." Indeed, the Nuremberg-born painter had an abid- ing love for the ocean, spending several years sail- ing the world in the German navy. As did Tavernier before him, he enjoyed an international reputation as a painter before coming to California in 1909. "He was a generous, eccentric character," Turner says. "He was often seen perched high atop cliffs dressed only in a flowered sarong with brush in hand." Ritschel purchased a plot of land in the Carmel Highlands from his friend, developer Frank Devendorf, recognized as "the father of Carmel." In that dramatic, sea-spray splashed location, he built a home from the granite on which it stood, called "Castel a Mare." "Ritschel was not only an active member of the artist colony, but also highly civic-minded," Trotter says. "During WWI, he donated the many medals he'd won to scrap drives to bene- fit the war effort." Turner had the good fortune to spend a day at the painter's former residence. "Standing in the backyard you can see where he got the inspira- tion for many of his paintings. It's simply stunning." William Ritschel (1864-1949)

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