Otis College of Art and Design logo
  • Otis Fine Arts hosts a Visiting Artist lecture series featuring John Houck, a Los Angeles-based artist. Read more about him here.
    Contact: Soo Kim, skim@otis.edu
  • Jesse Benson (b. 1978) is an artist based in Los Angeles. Benson's complex practice is driven by the perversion of roles and representation that characterize his generational moment. In obsessively "skillful" objects like the Bureau Paintings, Catalog Page Paintings, Future Sculptures, and Repaintings, Benson constantly questions the authenticity of the document, the function of style, and the value of both art and artist. Benson is equally committed to a curatorial/organizational practice that openly overlaps and inspires his object production.

  • The Architecture/Landscape/Interiors Department at OTIS College of Art and Design is pleased to announce a lecture by Nick SeierupPrincipal | Design Director of Perkins+Will, Los Angeles, on Thursday, December 3, 2015.


  • Marisa Silver is the author most recently of the New York Times bestselling novel Mary Coin. Her other books include the novels No Direction Home and The God of War (a finalist for a Los Angeles Times Book Prize), as well as two story collections, Babe in Paradise and Alone with You. Her work has appeared in The New Yorker and been included in many anthologies, including The Best American Short Stories and The O. Henry Prize Stories. Silver lives in Los Angeles.

  • Jesse Lerner is a filmmaker based in Los Angeles.  His short films Natives (1991, with Scott Sterling), T.S.H. (2004) and Magnavoz (2006) and the feature-length experimental documentaries Frontierland/Fronterilandia (1995, with Rubén Ortiz-Torres), Ruins (1999) The American Egypt (2001), Atomic Sublime (2010) and The Absent Stone (2013, with Sandra Rozental) have won numerous prizes at film festivals in the United States, Latin America and Japan.

  • Otis faculty member Dana Berman Duff will present a program of short 16mm and digital films in her "Catalogue" series.

  • Performing the Grid is an exhibition that brings together an intergenerational group of artists and cultural producers that utilize the grid as a performative strategy to examine, challenge and position philosophical, political, social, domestic, corporeal, and mythical perspectives. Rosalind Kraus famously wrote that the grid “functions to declare the modernity of modern art” in her 1979 essay, Grids.


Los Angeles Art Luminaries Take the Tate Modern, the Hammer Museum, and the Streets of L.A.

Please contact John Axtell for inquiries and photos:
310-665-6857 / jaxtell@otis.edu

Public Art from Meg Cranston and Roy Dowell commandeers billboards for the Hammer Museum’s Made in L.A. 2012; Suzanne Lacy’s Crystal Quilt at London’s Tate Modern.

LOS ANGELES, CA, July 31, 2012 - Work by three distinguished artists from Otis College of Art and Design can be viewed currently at the Tate Modern Gallery, Hammer Museum, and on billboards above the streets of Los Angeles.

Meg Cranston (Chair, Fine Arts) and Roy Dowell (Chair, Graduate Fine Arts) were selected to participate in the Hammer Museum’s first large-scale biennial survey of the work of sixty Los Angeles-based artists, Made in L.A. 2012. In addition to the exhibition, on view at the Hammer Museum through September 2, both artists were invited to produce public art billboards on a well-trafficked Los Angeles street.

Roy Dowell's billboard, on display during July on the east side of La Cienega Blvd between Venice and Washington Blvds, is produced by LA><ART Public Art Initiatives and ForYourArt - Los Angeles Public Domain (LAPD). Roy’s collages are inspired by design, advertising, and popular and world cultures. Although he uses abstract elements, Dowell draws from the representational and specific. The billboard recycles scraps of old billboards, combining the languages of public art and large-scale advertising, while connecting the sources and visual elements to his thirteen sculptures on display at the Hammer.

In August, Meg Cranston will create a billboard displayed at the same location. “For my first billboard,” she explains, “I did a version of my work in Made in L.A. 2012 at the Hammer. To have the image (of multiple cigarettes lighters) in two places makes it like an ad campaign. The question is what am I advertising? I suppose “real” advertisements work in a similar way. What is pictured is often only metaphorically related to the product being sold. Puppies can be used to sell toilet paper or an image of a beautiful woman to sell snow tires. To me the lighters have poetic resonance but I will let the audience decide.”

LA><ART’s contribution to Made in L.A. is “This is a Takeover! A Ten-Year Survey of Slanguage.” Slanguage, the internationally renowned artists’ collective co-founded by Otis alumnus Mario Ybarra, Jr., produced an interactive installation along with public events and performances that take place through September. Heralded by the L.A. Times as a “rare institution that successfully straddles the community and mainstream art worlds,” Slanguage focuses on art education, community-building, and interactive exhibitions to cultivate relationships between diverse artists, students, communities, and organizations.

The Crystal Quilt, by pioneering activist and artist Suzanne Lacy (Chair, Graduate Public Practice), has been recreated for London’s Tate Modern, July 18-October 28, for the inaugural exhibition of 'The Tanks' at the Tate Modern, designed by Swiss architectural duo Herzog & de Meuron. The new space, a series of recycled underground concrete oil tanks, opened to the public as part of the current London 2012 Festival in conjunction with the Cultural Olympiad.

The original Crystal Quilt (1987) took place in Minneapolis where Lacy gathered 430 women over the age of 60 to share their views on growing older. The resulting performances, broadcast live on television, were attended by more than 3,000 people. The Crystal Quilt at Tate Modern combines the original elements of performance, activism, and broadcast in an ambitious work fusing social responsibility with the power of aesthetics. Lacy plans to update this groundbreaking piece with ‘granny flash mobs,’ a performance piece that celebrates the achievements of older women in Britain.


Established in 1918, Otis College of Art and Design is a national leader in art and design education. The College mission is to prepare diverse students of art and design to enrich our world through their creativity, skill, and vision. Alumni and faculty are Fulbright, MacArthur, and Guggenheim grant recipients, Oscar awardees, legendary costume designers, leaders of contemporary art movements, and design stars at Apple, Abercrombie & Fitch, Adobe, Pixar, DreamWorks, Mattel, Nike, and Disney.

Otis enrolls approximately 1,100 full-time students, and offers Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in Architecture/Landscape/Interiors, Digital Media (Game and Entertainment Design, Animation, and Motion Design), Fashion Design, Communication Arts (Graphic Design, Illustration, and Advertising Design), Fine Arts (Painting, Photography, and Sculpture/New Genres), Product Design, and Toy Design.  Otis also awards the Master of Fine Arts degree in Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Public Practice, and Writing.

The five-acre main campus is located on L.A.’s Westside near the beach and LAX; the Graduate Studios are in nearby Culver City, and in the 18th Street Arts Center in Santa Monica.

2,700 adults and children participate in Continuing Education art and design classes and workshops.