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Marion K. Wachtel, a California Impressionist artist, had trained under John Vanderpoel at the Chicago Art Institute before heading to New York where she studied with William Merritt Chase. She had already acquired a reputation as an excellent portrait painter when she headed to California to study with William Keith. It was in California that she fell in love with the landscape, and fellow artist Elmer Wachtel. They married in 1904 and began traveling the entire western region for their subject matter. They settled along the Arroyo Seco in Pasadena, and Marion exhibited around the country.

After Marion Kavanagh arrived in San Francisco in 1903, she became a pupil under the instruction of William Keith (1838-1911). Marion Kavanagh Wachtel visited the Cooper Ranch in Santa Barbara, California during that same year where a guest for several months. The Santa Barbara, California Cooper Ranch, was owned by a brilliant agriculturist and a major proponent of the Eucalyptus tree by the name of Ellwood Cooper. Surrounded by groves of Eucalyptus trees on the Cooper Ranch, Marion K. Wachtel acquired a passion for the Eucalyptus tree and would include the tree in a many of her paintings throughout her life.

Until the death of her husband in 1929, painter Marion Kavanagh Wachtel (also known as Marion K. Wachtel) worked strictly in watercolor and pastel, while her husband Elmer worked in oil. After his death she began to paint in oils, and this brought a significantly brighter palette to her work.

Painting by Marion Wachtel titled: Laguna Canyon.

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Marion Wachtel exhibited with both the California and New York watercolor societies and this made her works popular on both coasts. Her early works are tighter and more meticulously detailed than those produced after 1920.

When Elmer died, she briefly stopped working and then in the early 1930s began to paint and exhibit again, now in oil as well as watercolor. She was unique to her era, becoming one of the first women to have their own exhibitions in such popular and public venues as the Los Angeles Museum of History, Science and Art, among dozens of other shows.

She is considered one of the best landscape painters of the American West and of Southern California. She developed her own unique method of painting in watercolor and pastel, and her knowledge of the region is considered unmatched by any other artist.

Her works are in several major collections including the John H. Vanderpoel Art Association, the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida and the Irvine Museum in California.


Marion Wachtel Gallery of Art - Visit the Marion Wachtel Gallery of Art website.


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1907-09 Del Monte Art Gallery, Monterey, California
1907 Anderson Gallery, Chicago, Illinois
1908, 1912, 1915 Steckel Gallery, Los Angeles, California
1911 Daniell Gallery, Los Angeles, California
1915, 1917 (solos) Los Angeles Museum of History, Science & Art, Los Angeles, California
1917 (solo) Milwaukee Art Institute, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
1921-27 California Watercolor Society, Los Angeles, California
1923 Leonard's, Los Angeles, California
1925 Biltmore Gallery, Los Angeles, California
1928 Kanst Gallery, Los Angeles, California
1935 (solo) Stanford University, Palo Alto, California
1936 (solo) University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California


Academy of Western Painters, Los Angeles, California
Pasadena Society of Artists (Founding Member), Pasadena, California
Friday Morning Club, Los Angeles, California


Early Fine Art Dealers specializes in valuing and purchasing important paintings from the 17th century through the early 20th century. Our buyers are in constant search for fine works of art and paintings, spanning the globe for original well-known Old Master, European, American, and early California art. Each year we preview and participate in hundreds of private sales, art shows, gallery showings, exhibitions and auctions. We are in constant search for fine works to purchase. Please contact us today to discuss the sale of one of your paintings. Please note that our gallery only deals with original paintings. No Prints Please.

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