Dorr Bothwell Biography

Dorr Bothwell was born in San Francisco in 1902 and raised in the Quaker tradition.  She entered the California School of Fine Arts when she was 19, and there she met her most influential teachers, Rudolf Schaeffer and Gottardo Piazzoni.  Bothwell continued to develop their theories of color and structure throughout her long career.  She passed on her knowledge to generations of art students at the San Francisco Art Institute, Parsons School of Design in New York and at the Mendocino Art Center.  

Bothwell was an industrious painter who explored many new styles and themes throughout her life.  Her work as a California modernist and symbolist has been featured in exhibitions and publications around the United States and overseas as well.  

Dorr Bothwell attended California School of Fine Arts, 1921-1923; University of Oregon, 1922; and the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design, San Francisco, 1924.

Solo Exhibitions: M. H. de Young Museum, 1958.

Selected Group Exhibitions: 61st Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1941; 62nd Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1942; 65th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1945; Second Annual Exhibition of Painting, California Palace of The Legion of Honor 1948; 67th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at
the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1948; Third Annual Exhibition of Painting, California Palace of The Legion of Honor 1949; 68th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1949; 70th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1951; Fifth Annual Exhibition of Contemporary Painting, California Palace of The Legion of Honor 1952; 72nd Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1953; PACIFIC COAST ART, IIIrd Biennial of Sao Paulo, Brazil, 1955; Contemporary American Painters, 1950-1955, Stanford Art Gallery 1956; 75th Annual Painting and Sculpture Exhibition of the San Francisco Art
Association at the San Francisco Museum of Art, 1956; The Art Bank of the San Francisco Art Association, 1958, 59, 60, 62, 63, 64, 66; Winter Invitational, California Palace of The Legion of Honor, San Francisco, 1963,1964; The Oakland Museum, California. A Period of Exploration: San Francisco 1945-1950; 1973.

Public Collections: San Diego Museum; Los Angeles County Museum; San Francisco Museum of Art; Metropolitan Museum; Santa Barbara Museum; Crocker Art Museum; Whitney Museum; Victoria and Albert Museum; Brooklyn Museum; Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris; California Palace of the Legion of Honor; New York Museum of Modern Art.

Literature: Bruce Kamerling, San Diego Historical Society; Who was Who in American Art; Who's Who on the Pacific Coast; Thomas Albright, Art in the San Francisco Bay Area, 1945-1980; Nancy Moure, California Art, 450 Years of Painting & Other Media; Pacific Dreams, Currents of Surrealism and Fantasy in California Art, 1934-1957. Independent Spirits: Women Painters of the American Southwest 1890-1945, and On the Edge of America, California Modernist Art 1900-1950. San Francisco Art Association (Institute) Catalog of the Art Bank