7321 Beverly Boulevard • Los Angeles California 90036 • (323)933-5523 Fax: (323)933-7618
A Special Vision
May 15th - June 30th, 1999
DORR BOTHWELL (born 1902) was born as a creative artist when a student of Gottardo Piazzoni at the California School of Fine Arts in San Francisco. Dorr cites Piazzoni's influences in her paintings of the '20s (see Figures in Landscape). An abstraction, an element of meditation, the use of flat color - often sun-drenched - is present in her early work.
At the School, she and fellow student,
Ruth Cravath, were close friends; Cravath's Portrait of an Artist
Bothwell) describes a straightforward and confident woman. The
also reveals the 'hand of the sculptor'.
During the'20s, Bothwell lived with her
family in San Francisco, teaching at the School, and in Port Gamble,
When her father died in the late '20s, she began her travels, beginning
with a sojourn in Samoa. As she says "I arrived after Margaret Meade,
I was more successful than she was because I danced with the natives!".
When she resettled back in
San Diego, she married her childhood
sculptor Donal Hord. Though they remained friends, she awoke one
and said "What am I doing married?"... and she left! That independence
has never disappeared.
Los Angeles was her next destination in 1934. She joined the group around Lorser Feitelson and Helen Lundeberg, attending classes conducted by the Federal Arts Project and painting in the mural division. 0n the project, she was also introduced to the technique of screen printing She enjoyed working in this medium and has created a rich body of works since 1943.
Her art encompasses a gentle
shown in her painting of Memory's Children 1942, a pensive
of the artist and her brother amidst the clouds. This mood extends into
the mysteries of dank marshes and eerie forms by the close of the '40s
in both paintings (Night Insect Conversation) and screen
Over these years, traveling has been a
passion. From Samoa in 1928, to Europe in 1930/3 1, to Paris in 1949/5
1, to Africa in 1966/67, to England, France and Holland in 1970, to
Java and Sumatra in 1974, to China and Japan in 1982/85..well, you get
the idea. Though she was awarded an Abraham Rosenberg Fellowship and
grants, her travels were additionally funded by the sale of her art and
anything moveable! She traveled in a footloose and unscheduled
absorbing serendipitous adventures as they arose. This joie de
has never left her. Even today, at the age of 97, she is active
uplifting. In fact, she has just traveled to San Diego from her home
Phoenix to speak at the opening of the Donal Hord retrospective
Mingled with her travels and her
works, she has been sought after as a teacher. Some of the places she
taught are the San Francisco Art Institute, the Mendocino Art Center,
Parsons School of Design in New York, the Ansel Adams Photography
in Yosemite and the Victor School of Photography in Colorado. Much of
class work has been focused upon her book "Notan:The Dark-Light
of Design", first published in 1968 in collaboration with Marlys
The book was republished in 1991 and has been translated into many
Dorr Bothwell's work is in private and
museum collections throughout the United States and in Paris and
Her most recent grant was the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award in 1998.
This show illustrates Bothwell's
whether joyous and sunny or dark and somber.
Her imagery is often.ambiguous -
real/surreal, sometimes anthropomorphic abstraction, sometimes
abstraction - but always provoking and stimulating.
Illustrations available to request.
Please call the Gallery
933-5523 for any further data or visuals. Copyright