Watercolor on heavy paper laid on board, 25 1/2" by 17 3/4", unframed, the subject being an extensive and spectacular bird's eye view of California's Yosemite Valley and its famous waterfalls. The work is signed at lower right and is not dated, but it is thought that Koch was most active in the early years of the twentieth century. According to the biography in Hughes' dictionary of California artists, he was the son of California artist Henry Koch (1846-1906). The younger Koch was born in Germany and came to the Philadelphia area as a youngster. By 1904 he was in Los Angeles, and a San Gabriel address as late as the year 1942 is recorded. There are some oils in the marketplace by this artist but most works are watercolors, always executed by an obviously very skilled hand. I have seen a painting in oil by the artist of this very same scene. This work is generally in good condition, with the remains of an old gold overmat adhering at the edges, and there are a few very small digs in the paper that show as white spots in the sky and at upper right and a few at lower right but I don't find these obtrusive. I've listed another work by the artist, of an old adobe house with an orange tree in the adjacent yard, also a beautifully executed painting. The artist deserves more recognition of his skill and I would hope the market will recognize that in future years. His work seems to be rather scarce and that is one reason he has not brought large numbers at auction. .
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