Events
  • Otis College alumni in the New York/Tri-State area are invited to a reception welcoming visiting Otis College fashion students at Global Brands Group headquarters in the Empire State Building. Join fellow alumni to celebrate the culmination of the Fashion Design Department's annual trip to Manhattan. This special event - open to all alumni from both undergraduate and graduate departments - is a great chance to reconnect with friends, welcome new Fashion Design alumni from the Class of 2017, and meet Otis College leaders including Fashion Design Interim Chair Jill Higashi-Zeleznik.

  • In conjunction with the current exhibition Patterns Bigger Than Any of Us: Jesse Fleming / Pat O'Neill in Ben Maltz Gallery, May 7 - August 12, 2017.

    In Conversation: Jesse Fleming and Pat O'Neill, moderated by LA-based idependent curator and historian Ciara Moloney

     

    Jesse Fleming (b. 1977) is part of an emerging group of artists and technologists that examine the convergence of media art and mindfulness. Recent solo exhibitions were held at Five Car Garage; 356 Mission; and Night Gallery, all in Los Angeles, CA; and the University of Texas in Austin, TX.

    Pat O’Neill’s (b. 1939) artistic and filmmaking career spans over 50 years, and he is highly-regarded for his experiments with film and optical printing. Recent solo exhibitions were held at Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley, CA; Monitor in Rome, Italy; VeneKlasen/Werner in Berlin, Germany; Quinta do Quetzal in Vidigueira, Portugal; Mitchell-Innes & Nash in New York, NY; and Cherry and Martin in Los Angeles, CA.

    Ciara Moloney is an independent curator, editor, and writer based in Los Angeles. She was formerly Curator of Exhibitions and Projects at Modern Art Oxford where she curated exhibitions by Barbara Kruger, Josh Kline, Lynn Hershman Leeson, Christian Boltanski and Kiki Kogelnik.

  • Amelia Gray is the author of the short story collections AM/PM, Museum of the Weird, and Gutshot, as well as the novels Threats and, most recently, Isadora, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. Her fiction and essays have appeared in The New Yorker, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Tin House, and VICE. She is winner of the New York Public Library Young Lions Award, of FC2's Ronald Sukenick Innovative Fiction Prize, and a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award. 

  • Luis J. Rodriguez was Los Angeles Poet Laureate from 2014-2016. The twenty-fifth edition of his first book, Poems Across the Pavement, won a 2015 Paterson Award for Sustained Literary Achievement. He has written fourteen other books of poetry, children’s literature, fiction, and nonfiction, including the best-selling memoir Always Running: La Vida Loca: Gang Days in L.A. Rodriguez is also founding editor of Tia Chucha Press and co-founder of Tia Chucha’s Centro Cultural & Bookstore in the San Fernando Valley. In 2016 Tia Chucha Press produced the largest anthology of L.A.-area poets, Coiled Serpent: Poets Arising from the Cultural Quakes & Shifts of Los Angeles. Rodriguez’s last memoir It Calls You Back: An Odyssey Through Love, Addiction, Revolutions, and Healing was a finalist for the 2012 National Book Critics Circle Award. His latest poetry collection Borrowed Bones appeared in 2016 from Curbstone Books/Northwestern University Press.

  • Raised in Philadelphia, with roots in South Africa and Trinidad, Zinzi Clemmons’ writing has appeared in Zoetrope: All-Story, Transition, The Paris Review Daily, and elsewhere. She has received fellowships and support from the MacDowell Colony, Bread Loaf, the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and the Kimbilio Center for African American Fiction. She is co-founder and former Publisher of Apogee Journal, and a Contributing Editor to LitHub. She teaches literature and creative writing at the Colburn Conservatory and Occidental College. Her debut novel, What We Lose, as well as a second title, are forthcoming from Viking.

  • Louise Sandhaus is a graphic designer and graphic design educator. She was previously Director of the Graphic Design Program at CalArts where she currently is faculty. Her recent book on California graphic design, Earthquakes, Mudslides, Fires and Riots: California and Graphic Design 1936-1986, co-published by Metropolis Books and Thames & Hudson, has received laudatory reviews from The New York Times, The Guardian, Eye, and Creative Review. The book received the Palm d’Argent for best art book at FILAF (International Festival of Art Books and Films on Art).

  • Photo Credit: Jesse Pniak

     

    F. Douglas Brown received the 2013 Cave Canem Poetry Prize (selected by Tracy K. Smith) for Zero to Three, published by the University of Georgia. He also co-authored the chapbook Begotten with Geffrey Davis as part of Upper Rubber Boot Book's Floodgate Poetry Series. Both a past Cave Canem and Kundiman Fellow, his poems have appeared in the Academy of American Poets, The Virginia Quarterly, Bat City Review, The Chicago Quarterly Review, The Southern Humanities Review, The Sugar House Review, Cura Magazine, and Muzzle Magazine. He is co-founder and curator of un::fade::able - The Requiem for Sandra Bland, a quarterly reading series examining restorative justice through poetry as a means to address racism. Brown currently teaches English at Loyola High School in Los Angeles.

O-Tube

Tyrus Wong

Come Fly a Kite at the Sixth Annual Kite Festival

Otis College of Art and Design will host its Sixth Annual Kite Festival adjacent to the Santa Monica Pier on Saturday, April 8, 2017, 11am – 4pm. Presented by the Creative Action program, the event is free and open to the public. 

Remembering Tyrus Wong

Alumnus Tyrus Wong, celebrated animator, ceramicist, painter, and kite maker passed away on Friday, December 30, 2016. Wong graduated from Otis College of Art and Design (then the Otis Art Institute) in the 1930s, and while exhibiting artworks around Los Angeles, he began working in the film industry as a production illustrator. It was his evocative concept art for Walt Disney's "Bambi" that would ultimately lead him down the path of becoming one of the most celebrated Chinese American artists of our time.

Documentary on Alumnus Tyrus Wong Screens at Newport Film Festival

If Pamela Tom hadn't watched past the end of "Bambi," she might never have found the inspiration for her documentary, which will screen this week at the Newport Beach Film Festival.

The filmmaker, who lives in Los Angeles, was enjoying a family viewing of a Disney classic a decade and a half ago when a bonus feature at the end of the videotape piqued her curiosity.

Documentary on Alum Tyrus Wong Premieres at Telluride Film Festival

Tyrus is the first in-depth portrait of the art, life, and enduring impact of Tyrus Wong. The film takes the audience on a remarkable journey — from his birthplace of Guangzhou, China in 1910 to the boarding houses of LA’s old Chinatown and the studios of the Golden Age of Hollywood. The film explores his formative years as a young WPA artist and the influence of Sung Dynasty art on his work. At a 104, Tyrus continues to live the life of an artist.

Alumnus Tyrus Wong

Tyrus Wong ('32) and his father immigrated to the United States from China when he was nine years old. His high school teachers noticed his artistic ability and arranged for a summer scholarship at Otis. Wong left junior high to attend Otis as a full-time student. Wong has worked as a painter, lithographer, muralist, and designer in his long career.

Alumnus Tyrus Wong in The Wall Street Journal

From ‘Bambi’ to Kites, His Work Flies High

Artist Tyrus Wong, 104 years old, is focus of exhibition at Museum of Chinese in America
 
By Elizabeth Yuan
 
After Tyrus Wong retired from the movie business nearly 50 years ago, he started making kites that he would fly over the beach in Santa Monica, Calif. To this day, bobbing on the end of his kite strings are colorful handmade creatures, including owls, centipedes, a pink-and-yellow caterpillar, a panda—sometimes more than a dozen at a time.
 

NPR Profiles Alumnus Tyrus Wong and His Work on Bambi

The Chinese 'Paper Son' Who Inspired The Look Of Disney's 'Bambi'

By Hansi Lo Wang
 
The animals were getting lost in the forest — so the story goes.
 
A year after Walt Disney made history with the release of his studio's first feature-length animated film, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, his artists were struggling to find the right design for the woodland backgrounds of Bambi, the coming-of-age tale of a young deer.
 

Alumnus Tyrus Wong exhibition

Through February 3, 2014, The Walt Disney Family Museum present the exhibition Water to Paper, Paint to Sky: The Art of Tyrus Wong. Wong, Otis' oldest living alumnus at 102, continues to produce art, and fly kites of his own design. His early work for Disney on the backdrops for Bambi clearly showed the influence of Asian art. San Francisco's cable cars are heralding the event.

Tyrus Wong

Part of the series: Otis Legacy Project: Interviews of Distinguished Otis Alumni. Tyrus Wong attended Otis in 1935. He became a famous artist working for the film industry. One of his most famous jobs was to paint the backgrounds for Bambi. He enjoys flying kites in his retirement. Tyrus was interviewed by Otis students in November 2007. This is an excerpt from the longer video available in the Otis Millard Sheets Library.