Portrait of Arthur Becher, Howard Pyle Manuscript Collection, Delaware Art Museum
Arthur E. Becher
Date: American artist and illustrator, 1877–1960
Biography: Arthur Ernst Becher (1877-1960) was born in Freiburg, Germany, and moved to Milwaukee in 1885 with his parents. He studied initially with Frederick William Heine and Robert Schade, and also painted at Jones Island, a fishing village near Milwaukee. He attended Howard Pyle's 1903 summer school in Chadds Ford and the Wilmington studio classes that fall. In 1908, while on assignment in Europe for Appletons' Magazine, he studied with Otto Strutzel, known for landscape and animal painting, in Munich.

Becher illustrated magazine fiction, novels, historical school texts, and religious pictures for Sunday School distribution. He also painted landscapes of the area around his upper Hudson Valley home and, during 1931 and 1939, of Arizona. He was particularly known for his depictions of horses.

In 1904, Becher married Frieda L. Knappe of Milwaukee, who frequently modeled for him. They lived in Ardsley, New York and, in 1917, bought a farm in Putnam County, New York. In 1911, he exhibited at The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Becher was a member of the Society of Illustrators.

Becher died in Poughkeepsie, New York, in 1960.