Jessie Arms Botke

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Jessie Arms Botke
Photo of Jessie Arms Botke.jpg
Born(1883-05-27)May 27, 1883
Chicago, Illinois, United States
DiedOctober 2, 1971(1971-10-02) (aged 88)
NationalityUnited States
Alma materSchool of the Art Institute of Chicago
MovementCalifornia Impressionism

Jessie Hazel Arms Botke (May 27, 1883 – October 2, 1971) was an Illinois and California painter noted for her bird images and use of gold leaf highlights.[1]


Ducks, Jessie Arms Bottke

Jessie Arms Botke was born in Chicago,Illinois to William Aldis and Martha (Cornell) Arms,[2] and attended the Chicago Art Institute in 1897-98 and again from 1902 to 1905. She took summer classes from artists John Christen Johansen and Charles Herbert Woodbury and continued working with the renowned Albert Herter, who had the most influence in shaping her approach to composition and color.[3] Following a short trip to Europe in 1909, she returned to her parents Chicago residence and officially listed her profession as “artist, interior decorating.”[4] She worked as a muralist in New York City (1911) and in San Francisco (1913-14). She married Cornelius Botke in April 1915 and gave birth a year later to their only child, William. She and her husband moved to Carmel-by-the-Sea, California in 1919 and became influential figures in the local art colony until they moved to Southern California in 1927.[5] During her career she was a prolific exhibitor.[5] She was an exhibitor and secretary of the California Art Club. She ran her family’s ranch at Wheeler Canyon in Santa Paula, while continuing to paint.[6] Jessie Arms Botke died on October 2, 1971 in Santa Paula, California. [7]

Exhibitions and awards[edit]

  • 1917 – Chicago Art Institute, Englewood Woman’s Club Prize
  • 1918 – Chicago Art Institute, Martin B. Cahn Prize
  • 1919 – Exhibition of Chicago Artists Annual, Chicago Artists’ Medal
  • 1920 – Chicago Art Institute, William O. Thompson Prize
  • 1920-1923 – Annual and Holiday Exhibitions of the Carmel Arts and Crafts Club
  • 1921 - Milwaukee Art Institute (with Cornelius)
  • 1921 - Crocker Art Gallery in Sacramento (with Cornelius)
  • 1922 (January) – Exhibition of California Women Painters, Stanford University Art Gallery
  • 1922 (April) – Exhibition of Carmel and Monterey Artists, Stanford University Art Gallery
  • 1922 – Chicago Art Institute Annual
  • 1925 – National Association of Women Painters & Sculptors in New York, Honorable Mention
  • 1925-1945 – Grand Central Galleries in New York City
  • 1926 – Exhibition of Chicago Artists Annual, First Prize ($500.00)
  • 1926 – Del Monte Art Gallery (Monterey, California)
  • 1926 – Traveling Exhibition (with Cornelius) of Western and Midwestern Museums
  • 1926 – Hotel San Carlos Art Gallery (Monterey, California)
  • 1926-1927 – Carmel Art Gallery
  • 1927 – Stendahl Galleries of Los Angeles (with Cornelius)
  • 1933 – National Association of Women Painters & Sculptors in New York, Tucker Prize
  • 1933 – Statewide Annual of the Santa Cruz Art League
  • 1935 – First Annual Exhibition of the Academy of Western Painters, unspecified prize


Inspired by early work as a designer of woven tapestries, Botke's art often featured birds, particularly white peacocks, geese and cockatoos.[6] Later in her career, she moved from oils to watercolors, and also focused on still lives.[citation needed]

Botke exhibited regularly throughout the United States during her lifetime.[1] Her work has also been exhibited posthumously at the Irvine Museum[8] and the Museum of Ventura County.[9]


  1. ^ a b "Botke, Jessie Arms (1883–1971)". North American Women Artists of the Twentieth Century: A Biographical Dictionary. Hoboken: Taylor and Francis. 2013. ISBN 978-1-135-63889-4.
  2. ^ St. Gaudens, Maurine (2015). Emerging From the Shadows: A Survey of Women Artists working in California, 1860-1960. Atglen, PA: Schiffer. p. 100. ISBN 978-0-7643-4861-7.
  3. ^ Carmel Pine Cone, April 1921, p. 4.
  4. ^ U.S. Census of 1910, Ed1040, Sheet 15A.
  5. ^ a b Edwards, Robert W. (2012). Jennie V. Cannon: The Untold History of the Carmel and Berkeley Art Colonies, Vol. 1. Oakland, Calif.: East Bay Heritage Project. pp. 194, 188–189, 256, 326–327, 688. ISBN 9781467545679. An online facsimile of the entire text of Vol. 1 is posted on the Traditional Fine Arts Organization website ("Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-04-29. Retrieved 2016-06-07.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)).
  6. ^ a b Trenton, Patricia; Solon, Deborah Epstein (1995). Birds, boughs & blossoms: Jessie Arms Botke (1883-1971). William A. Karges Fine Art. ISBN 9781886394001.
  7. ^ "Outdoor memorial services are scheduled Thursday in Santa Paula for Jessie Arms Botke, noted painter of birds, who died Saturday at the age of 88", quoted in "Rites Set for Jessie Botke, Bird Painter", Los Angeles Times, Wednesday, October 6, 1971, p. II-6
  8. ^ Chang, Richard (18 May 2012). "Irvine Museum showcases California women artists". Orange County Register. Retrieved 5 March 2015.
  9. ^ "Museum exhibit first to feature two generations of art by famed Botke family". 22 November 2006. Retrieved 7 March 2015.