January 12, 2019


Key West and Nantucket artist William H. Welch lost his battle with multiple myeloma Friday, Nov. 9, 2018. He was 71.

In a rich career spanning more than 35 years, Bill gained international renown for his evocative work drawing from an expressive passion for light and color in the impressionist tradition.

Bill was born in Cleveland, Ohio, May 21, 1947. He received his bachelor’s degree in graphic and fine arts from Ohio University in 1970, and graduate training at Philadelphia College of Art.

A dynamic and devoted member of the Key West artist community, he received the Miriam B. Good award from the Anne Mckee Artist Fund in 2014. Bill also spent many years in France, where he honed his technique in Normandy, Brittany and Provence, and developed a strong following with regular shows in Arles and Giverny. One of Bill’s great joys was teaching art students all over the world, particularly in the technique of plein air: painting outdoors in natural light.

His work has been represented in numerous galleries in the U.S. and overseas, including his own William Welch Waterside Studio and Gallery on Easy Street on Nantucket and Frangipani Gallery in Key West.

He is survived by his loving partner, David Fronheiser; his sister, Sherrey Welch, of Venice, Florida; five nieces and nephews, eight grandnieces and grandnephews; three step-nieces and step-nephews, and a step-grandnephew.

There will be a show of William Welch works at the Frangipani Gallery, 1102 A Duval St., on Friday, Jan. 25, from 5 to 7 p.m. A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, Jan. 26, at the Gardens Hotel. Please call the Frangipani Gallery at 305-849-1581 for further information.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to AH of Monroe County, Inc. (AIDS Help) 1434 Kennedy Drive, Key West, FL 33040, 305-296-6196; or Anne McKee Artist Fund, PO Box 2094, Key West, FL 33045.