Dorr Bothwell

Dorr Bothwell

1902-2000
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After studying at the California School of Fine Arts under Gottardo Piazzoni, at the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design, and at the University of Oregon, Bothwell began to live a largely nomadic life. The first of her travels was to Samoa, where she lived from 1928 to 1930 and was initiated into a native tribe and tattooed; future trips included West and North Africa, Indonesia, China, Japan, and Mexico. Throughout, Bothwell studied indigenous artistic traditions in order to discover their rules of design. Growing out of a deep understanding that all things are integrated, she learned to see order and design in nature. Translation from the Maya represents the essence of Bothwell’s artistic and spiritual search.
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In 1968, Bothwell (along with Marlys Mayfield) wrote a book on Eastern design principles coming out of her lifelong study. Notan: The Dark-Light Principle of Design remains a definitive book on the subject.

Translation from the Maya
Oil on Celotex, 1940
23 x 19 inches
Museum purchase with funds provided through prior gift of Lois Outerbridge
2000.001