Otis College of Art and Design logo



    SCREENING AND CONVERSATION with Margaret Prescod, Founder, Black Coalition Fighting Back Serial Murders and host of “Sojourner Truth” on Pacifica Radio’s KPFK.
    Nana Gyamfi, Lawyer-Black Lives Matter, Black Coalition Fighting Back Serial Murders.

  • Otis Fine Arts hosts a Visiting Artist lecture series featuring Oliver Payne, a Los Angeles-based artist. Read more about him here.
    Contact: Soo Kim, skim@otis.edu
  • Kimberli Meyer trained as an architect and an artist, and has been the director of the MAK Center for Art and Architecture at the Schindler House in West Hollywood since 2002. She has initiated and curated many programs there, including the exhibitions How Many Billboards?

  • Industry Spotlight

    Oct 15| Special Event

    An advertising creative director for more than 25 years, Otis alumnus Josh Weltman was the Mad Men co-producer responsible for Don Draper's credibility as an advertising genius.


    Join us for a behind-the-scenes look at the hit series, plus hear key insights from Weltman's new book Seducing Strangers: How to Get People to Buy What You're Selling.


    October 15, 6:30 - 9:30 pm

  • Otis Fine Arts hosts a Visiting Artist lecture series featuring Yutaka Makino. He lives and works in Berlin.  Read more about him here.
    Contact: Soo Kim, skim@otis.edu
  • Susan Choi’s first novel, The Foreign Student, won the Asian-American Literary Award for fiction, and her second novel, American Woman, was a finalist for the 2004 Pulitzer Prize. Her most recent novel, A Person of Interest, was a finalist for the 2009 PEN/Faulkner Award. With David Remnick she co-edited the anthology Wonderful Town: New York Stories from The New Yorker. A recipient of fellowships from the NEA and the Guggenheim Foundation, and in 2010, the inaugural winner of the PEN/W.G. Sebald Award, Choi lives in Brooklyn.

  • Joe Sola (‘99)’s work has been exhibited internationally in galleries and museums including: The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Hammer Museum, The Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, The Andy Warhol Museum  and Kunsthaus Gras, Austria, Museum of Modern Art Jean-Duc, Luxembourg. Museo Rufino Tamayo, Mexico City.  His performances have taken place at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, MOT International in London, 356 Mission Rd, Los Angeles.



What you learn will serve you for a lifetime

During your first year, known as Foundation, you will experience an immersive program that promotes your success in college. Through inspiring studio and Liberal Arts and Sciences courses, you will acquire skills that are fundamental to all visual arts and the construction of meaning.

As adept, well-informed makers, you will examine new ideas, learn new ways of thinking, and ask new questions that will enhance your creativity, expression, and innovation. Visual and idea-oriented research will support your pictorial and 3-D compositions. Collaborative experiences in a learning community will ignite a spirit of investigation that will propel your education and practice. Frequent workshop demonstrations will help you to realize ideas you never knew you had. Close dialogue with faculty members will allow you to visually resolve your work, and discover working methods that will carry you into a major, serve you through college, and last a lifetime.

Foundation Forward This spring event helps you select a program of study. You may elect to pursue a Minor by entering one program of study and taking a number of elective courses outside that program.

Paris Trip Each spring break, a group of Foundation students travel to Paris for nine days to view art and design in an extraordinary urban environment. 

foundation tumblr


Check out the Foundation Tumblr page
and follow us!

By the end of the Foundation Year, students will have acquired these skills and concepts:

Fundamental Skills

  Mindful making and improving of work by manipulation of art and design media.
Thinking Skills   The ability to distinguish between and use rational, intuitive, and critical thinking processes, and to construct meaning using visual information.
Visual Quality   The ability to identify visual strengths and weaknesses to promote aesthetic resolution and clarity of intention.

Strategies for success such as attentiveness, time-management skills, and the ability to commit to a personal vision in the endeavor of art making.

Quantitative Skills  

The ability to use sound principles of proportion to measure, calculate, and transfer dimensions of the observed and built world.

Inventiveness and Spirit of Investigation    

The ability to develop problem solving skills utilizing visual and idea oriented research, the spirit of play, and the sequential application of process.

Awareness of Social Responsibility   An awareness of the social and environmental impact of art and design.


Learn more about undergraduate degrees offered by Otis in our view book, open with Page Viewer or Download (PDF).