The German painter Max Peiffer Watenphul was born on 1 September 1896 in Weferlingen as the son of a pharmacist. After the award of the Rome Prize in 1931, his passion for Italy is born, and throughout his artistic career, he has traveled throughout Italy, where numerous landscapes and city views are emerging. Peiffer Watenphul dies in Rome on 13 July 1976.
Max Peiffer Watenphul first studied at the request of parental medicine, but after a short time he moved to the Jurastudium in Strasbourg, Frankfurt am Main and Munich. During his studies, he discovered his passion for painting through the works of Paul Klee, whom he later met personally. He concludes his jurisprudence, but decides to follow the artistic career and studies from 1919 on to the Weimar Bauhaus with Walter Gropius. During this time he made numerous friendships with artists such as Oskar Schlemmer, Wassily Kandinsky, Otto Dix and Max Ernst. Through a contract with the gallery owner Alfred Flechtheim, Peiffer Watenphul can create financially independent art. From 1927 to 1930 he took a position as a teacher for general artistic design at the Folkwangschule in Essen, where he can deepen his interest in photography. In the 1930s, he spent several years in Italy before he took over the management of the painting and drawing class at the Fachschule für textile Flächenkunst in Krefeld for financial reasons in 1941. After the destruction of his studios in Krefeld, he traveled to Austria and taught at the Salzburger Kunstgewerbeschule until 1946. Since he was not granted a residence permit in Austria, he escaped to Venice, where he took part in the biennial in 1948 and organized his first solo exhibition in 1949 after the war. After obtaining a passport in 1951, a studio is made available to him by the City of Salzburg. In 1952 he became a member of the Deutscher Künstlerbund. After the acquisition of a small studio he moved to Rome in autumn 1958. In 1969, Peiffer Watenphul was awarded the Great Cross of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. Two years after his death, a first retrospective took place in the Kunsthalle in Darmstadt in 1972.