George Demont Otis Biography

George Demont Otis




George Demont Otis, painter, printmaker, lecturer, teacher and conservationist, was born in Memphis, Tennessee in 1879.  A student of Chase and Henri, Otis studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago Academy of Fine Arts, Cooper Union, National Academy of Design, Art Students’ League and the Brooklyn Academy. His early career as a baseball pitcher ended after a few years when he decided to devote his life to art. 

Based in Chicago, Otis traveled extensively across the U.S., making several excursions to California. William Merritt Chase taught in Carmel during the summer of 1914 due to the influence of Otis.  Otis lived briefly in Colorado, Taos and Santa Fe before moving in 1919 to Burbank, California where he maintained a studio and executed work for the movie industry.  In 1930, he moved to San Francisco and four year later settled in Marin County, where he taught private lessons in painting and etching until 1939.

Conservation was one of his prime concerns and, through his paintings and lectures, Otis helped to establish the Point Reyes National Seashore and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.  His memberships included the Palette and Chisel Club of Chicago, Brush and Pen Club, Chicago Society of Artists, Laguna Beach Art Association, Painters and Sculptors Club of Los Angeles, American Society of Artists, Society of Western Artists and the Marin Society of Artists.  His work is represented in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, Smithsonian Institute, The White House, and the Oakland Museum.

Otis died in Marin County, California in 1962