In the Bavarian Alps, housepainting is an ancient and honorable art. In the 14th to 18th centuries, most buildings of any account were decorated with high, wide & handsome representations of saints (and, occasionally, sinner: These paintings, done in weatherproof fresco and retouched every 50 years so, still make scores of Bavarian streets look like open-air picture galleries. Today the art of housepainting is enjoying a boom, thanks largely to the efforts and skill of a Garmisch-Partenkirchen painter named Heinrich Bickel.

A stocky, dedicated little artist with an iron-grey mustache and invariably dressed...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!