Born 1847, in Oxford, England (came to U.S. as a child). Lived Norwalk (Silvermine), CT. Studied with John Ruskin, also self-taught. Began as portrait painter in Buffalo, NY, in 1872. Later specialized in landscapes.
Member: ANA, 1886; NA, 1889; American Watercolor Society. Founder, Silvermine, CT colony of artists.
In the collection of: Buffalo Academy of Fine Arts (later Albright Knox); The Valley of Fountains; National Academy (Portrait of Thomas Moran); Buffalo Historical Society; NY Historical Soiety; Columbus (Georgia) Museum of Art.
Charles Reiffel was a largely self-taught landscape painter who worked for several lithography companies in Cincinnati, New York, and England, all the while painting in his bold, modernist style.
In 1912, Reiffel purchased a home in the artist’s colony of Silvermine, Connecticut. Finally abandoning the lithography business in 1921, Reiffel turned to easel painting full time.
In 1925 Reiffel moved to the warmer climate of San Diego, where he was a prolific painter of the area’s wide-open back-country. Painting in a wild, rich impasto, Reiffel’s bright landscapes brought him national acclaim before his death in 1942.
A modernist landscape painter and lithographer who became prominent in California, Charles Reiffel was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. Early in his career, he worked in Cincinnati for the Stowbridge Lithography Company.
He studied briefly with Carl Marr in Munich and, mainly self-taught, traveled for six years throughout Europe, sketching and studying in museums. He did commercial art in England and then worked as a lithographer in Buffalo, New York, and in 1912 in Silvermine, Connecticut where he purchased a home. About 1921, he abandoned lithography for easel painting.
In 1925, he and his wife went to Southern California and were so taken with the countryside, they moved near San Diego. His landscapes of southern California brought him fame, and he also painted the Grand Canyon and other Southwest landscapes. He died in San Diego on March 14, 1942.