Born on May 3, 1918 in Chicago, Illinois, Krahn grew up in a large family on the south side of Chicago. After high school, he attended a junior college, and the School of the Art Institute in Chicago. He later served as a Second Lieutenant in the Second World War until November 1944. After the war, Krahn continued his studies. He later met and started traveling with Eliot O’Hara.
"William G. Krahn (was) originally a Chicago artist…since studying and working with Elliot O’Hara…in 1958, Krahn has traveled widely in the Caribbean, Mexico, and Europe. During the O’Hara period, his work was in the realist tradition, but his (1963) show at the Ft. Lauderdale Museum was virtually abstract. The artist himself denotes or classifies his (1963) exhibition as “an experiment in paintings”. It is a definition which Krahn feels best expressing what he is striving to achieve with mood…in different media…” (Maurice La Reau, Art Editor, On Gallery Walls, Fort Lauderdale News & Sentinel, Feb. 24, 1963)
After the O’Hara years, he lived on the near-north side of Chicago, and provided illustrations for Christmas and notepaper cards for Marshall Field’s & Co. He died on November 28, 1971 at the Hines Veterans Hospital, and is buried at The Rock Island (IL) National Cemetery.
The author of this write-up is Raymond W. Fischer, a nephew of Mr. Krahn, who is responsible for this material.