Paul Lauritz

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About this artist

Paul Lauritz was a noted Southern California painter of the desert. Born in the picturesque resort town of Larvik, Norway, which was often visited by artists, he received his first instruction in art at an early age from such visiting artists and studied at the Larvik art school for three years. He may have had some contact with the noted landscape painter Fritz Thaulow (1847-1906) and the figure painter Christian Krogh (1852-1925). At age sixteen Lauritz immigrated to eastern Canada, where he worked in the quarries. He went west and first in Vancouver, British Columbia, and then in Portland, Oregon, did some commercial art work and began to paint. Attracted to Alaska by the gold rush of 1915, he painted there and met Sidney Lawrence (1865-1940). In late 1919 Lauritz settled in Los Angeles, taking up painting as his sole occupation. He quickly established himself as a landscape painter, winning numerous prizes through the years, and became active in various art associations, particularly the California Art Club and Los Angeles Municipal Art Commission. Lauritz taught privately and at Chouinard Art Institute in 1928 and Otis Art Institute (Los Angeles County Art Institute). He traveled throughout the Southwest in search of motifs and in 1925 returned to Norway for a visit. In the early 1930s he developed his own brand of paints, selling them under the name of Perma. His art changed little after this time. Lauritz actively continued exhibiting through the 1950s, winning awards in group shows in California and other parts of the West. In 1957 he visited Norway as well as France and England.

Arthur Millier, "Our Artists in Person, no. 30: Paul Lauritz," Los Angeles Times, July 5, 1931, pt. 3, pp. 12, 15 § Ed Ainsworth, "Paul Lauritz: The Man Who Paints the Desert’s Spirit," Palm Springs (Calif.) Villager (May 1957) § Paul Lauritz (N.p., n.d.), with remarks by Herman Reuter, Alma May Cook, M. J. Karpf, and Ed Ainsworth, reprints Alma May Cook article from Los Angeles Evening Herald and Express, September 1957, with lists of awards (to 1960) and collections § Moure with Smith 1975, pp. 146-47, with bibliography § Westphal 1982, pp. 74-77, with list of awards and public collections.