• Todd Gray

    Oct 25| Lectures

    Todd Gray was born in 1954 in Los Angeles. Gray received an MFA and a BFA from California Institute of the Arts and is currently a professor at California State University, Long Beach. He has shown performance work at REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater), Los Angeles (2010); California African American Museum, Los Angeles (2009); the Commons, New York University (2008); 18th Street Arts Center, Santa Monica (2008); New Renaissance Theater, Syracuse, NY (2007); and Academy of Media Arts, Cologne (2004).

  • Ruby Neri is a sculptor, painter, and former street artist from San Francisco and Los Angeles, California, known for her evocative portrayal of horses.

  • Otis in NYC
    October 27, 2016 
    6 - 8 pm 
    Franklin Parrasch Gallery
    53 East 64 Street
    New York, NY 10065

    Otis College President Bruce W. Ferguson is coming to NYC! 
    Please come say hello and visit with your fellow alumni and friends of Otis College of Art and Design.
    Drinks and hors d'oeuvres.


  • Lecture takes place at 356 S. Mission Rd., co-presented with Ben Maltz Gallery in conjunction with the exhibition Polly Apfelbaum: Face (Geometry) (Naked) Eyes.

    New York-based critic and independent curator Bob Nickas presents his musings on one hundred paintings, choosing one from each year from 1915-2015.

  • Bob Nickas

    Oct 31| Lectures

    Bob Nickas is a critic and independent curator based in New York, having organized more than ninety exhibitions since 1984.
    He was Curatorial Advisor at P.S.1/MoMA in New York between 2004-07, where his exhibitions include: 
    Lee Lozano: Drawn From Life; 
    William Gedney—Christopher Wool: Into the Night; 
    Stephen Shore: American Surfaces; 
    Wolfgang Tillmans: Freedom From The Known. 

  • Looking at the recent works of Sebastian Stumpf one finds an interplay between performance and the recording of performance, between the execution of a physical act and the documentation of it by means of a camera. [He] operates in two distinct realms: in the empty spaces of contemporary art institutions and in urban settings with their preexisting orders. […] An inconspicuous architectural detail suddenly becomes the catalyst for a physical exploit…. The art gallery becomes a space for action.

  • Passionate Voices Expressed in Sound Bearing Plastic: An Evening with Collector Richard Shelton


Ford Foundation

CONTACT: Rose Anne McCants,, (310) 665-6859 

Ford Foundation Awards San Joaquin Valley Planning Grant

Los Angeles, Calif. (May 12, 2008) – – Otis College of Art and Design was awarded a $150,000 planning grant from the Ford Foundation to help create a project in which students will collaborate with community members in the San Joaquin (Central) Valley to find creative solutions to some of the vast and growing problems facing the region. This project is a pilot for the Otis Global Public Service (GPS) program.
As part of Otis’ continued success in community engagement, the mission of Otis GPS is to expand opportunities for artists and designers to serve communities worldwide, and to instill within them a lifelong responsibility and commitment to public service. Recently, Otis was one of seventy-six institutions qualified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching for its new Community Engagement classification, and is the only art and design college in this inaugural group.
Beginning in summer 2008, Otis MFA and BFA students will travel to three counties of the San Joaquin Valley: Kern, Tulare, and Fresno. The program will be lead by Suzanne Lacy, noted artist, author, and Chair of Otis’ Master of Fine Arts Program in Public Practice. 
“As someone who was born and raised in the San Joaquin Valley area, I am intimately familiar with its problems and its opportunities,” stated Lacy. “For a professional college of art and design such as Otis, in a large metropolitan area, the opportunity for our students to explore global issues in a rural setting is tremendous. The project will bring forward all kinds of issues, from the environment to food production, from housing to the loss of farm land.” 
Although the San Joaquin Valley is rich in resources and recognized as one of the most productive agricultural regions, it is also one of the most challenged. For example:
* Six counties are among the 52 counties with the highest poverty rate in the U.S.
* Lowest reading rates among third graders; highest drop-out rates among high school
students; and low college attendance rates compared to the rest of the state. 

* The region is one of only two in the nation to be identified by the U.S. Environmental  Protection Agency for repeatedly failing to meet air quality standards.


According to the California Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley, a partnership created under executive order by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, “Improving the economy and the well-being of the people of the San Joaquin Valley requires a concerted, coordinated and creative response from leaders at all levels of government and from community members.” 

Otis students will participate in field trips to the Central Valley, and will undertake research into the ecological, sociological and economic factors that contribute to the region’s problems. Students will also work with local leaders to identify regional strengths, and work with residents, and community leaders on ways in which they can effectively support the area. Students will learn cross-cultural communication and community organizing skills, root cause analysis and big picture thinking, all within the context of making art and design contributions to communities in the San Joaquin Valley.
“Artists worldwide have both the ability and responsibility to transform the quality of life for people living in unfortunate conditions,” stated Orlando Bagwell, Director of Media, Arts, and Culture at the Ford Foundation. “The Otis GPS project in the San Joaquin Valley is innovative and can positively impact lives in the region. It promotes collaboration among the nonprofit, government, and business sectors; and encourages participation from diverse communities at all levels of society. Scholars from colleges and universities in the region, members of the farming community, local artists, and K-12 teachers and students will contribute to this project. The Ford Foundation exists to support projects like Otis GPS.”  
“Otis is a socially committed institution that takes a proactive role in its communities,” stated Samuel Hoi, Otis’ President. “It’s part of Otis’ tradition and ingrained in the culture of the College. We are honored that the Ford Foundation recognizes Otis’ efforts. The San Joaquin project will make a lasting impression on students and will undoubtedly inform their artistic and community work for years to come.”






Established in 1918, Otis College of Art and Design offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in a wide variety of visual and applied arts, media, and design. Core programs in liberal arts, business practices, and community-driven projects support the College’s mission to prepare diverse students to enrich our world through their creativity, skill, and vision. As Los Angeles’ first professional art school, visionary alumni and faculty include MacArthur and Guggenheim grant recipients, Oscar awardees, and design stars at Apple, Anthropologie, Pixar, Mattel, and more. The renowned Creative Action program has been recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for Community Engagement, and the Otis Report on the Creative Economy is a powerful advocacy tool for creative industries. The College serves the Greater Los Angeles Area through compelling public programming, as well as year-round Continuing Education courses for all ages. More information is available at
Otis College Ranked 6th in Nation by The Economist