Events
  • Viet Thanh Nguyen’s bestselling novel The Sympathizer won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the First Novel Prize from the Center for Fiction, and a Carnegie Medal from the American Library Association. It was also a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award and the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize for Debut Fiction. Nguyen is also the author of Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America and Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War.

  • Tonya Foster

    Sep 21| Lectures
    More

    Poet Tonya Foster is the author of the collection A Swarm of Bees in High Court. Her work has appeared in nocturnes, Callaloo, Traffic, Gulf Coast, and other journals. Her essays have appeared in NY Arts Magazine, NYFA Quarterly and The Poetry Project Newsletter. A co-editor of Third Mind: Teaching Creative Writing Through Visual Art, Foster teaches at California College of the Arts and lives in the Bay Area.

  • Steven Ehrlich and Frederick Fisher will present their firms’ collaboration as EHRLICH | FISHER on Otis College’s new Goldsmith Campus Academic Building and Residence Hall. The campus-wide expansion and renovation project includes a new academic building, 300-seat Forum (the venue for this lecture), café and dining commons, Student Life Center, and residence hall.

     

  • Opening Reception

    Sep 24| Special Event
    More

    New York-based artist Polly Apfelbaum’s work has situated itself as a hybrid of painting, sculpture, and installation over a career spanning 30 plus years. Exploring the intricacies of color, Apfelbaum weaves her way, both literally and conceptually, through ideas of Minimalism, Pop aesthetics, and Color Field painting to blur the lines between two and three dimensional art making.

  • Artist Polly Apfelbaum in conversation with Connie Butler, within Apfelbaum's exhibition Face (Geometry) (Naked) Eyes.

     

  • John Keene

    Oct 05| Lectures
    More

    John Keene is the author of the novels Annotations and Counternarratives, as well as several other works, including the poetry collection Seismosis, with artist Christopher Stackhouse, and a translation of Brazilian author Hilda Hilst's novel Letters from a Seducer. The recipient of a Whiting Award, Keene has been a member of the Dark Room Writers Collective and a Cave Canem fellow. He has served as the managing editor of Callaloo and taught at Northwestern. He currently teaches at Rutgers University-Newark and lives in New York.

  • Artist Polly Apfelbaum in conversation with David Pagel, within Apfelbaum's exhibition Face (Geometry) (Naked) Eyes.

     

O-Tube

Academic Excellence: Rachel Kaminer

Something Unusual/idiosyncratic?
I lived in a wilderness setting for about two years facilitating experiential education and therapy. I can carve a bow-drill set and bust a coal.

 

Hometown?
I was born in San Luis Obispo [California] and grew up in the mountains around Asheville, N.C.
 

Why Otis?
I decided to pursue an MFA in L.A., and Paul Vangelisti conveyed to me that Graduate Writing is about reading and writing and making and translating, in what we might call the “Un-American Tradition.” I knew I wanted to be in the company of writers and artists who conducted themselves as colleagues, who brought diverse life experience to their practices. I remember reading the book list Jen Hofer posted online for one of her courses with such excitement. That’s when I knew I would apply. And the web page had such lovely design. I guessed that meant Otis was a good fit for students who pay attention both to form and content.


Your thesis project?
A book-length work of poetry—this means the poetry is talking to itself across the breadth of the whole work. The book is about listening. Or, put another way, it’s the joy and
responsibility that we have in language; that we make meaning; that it’s musical. Then again, it recently became apparent to me that I may complete an entire book of poetry with these philosophical ideas as an influence—and then it will turn out to be about heartbreak. The joke is on me for being the last one to get it.
 

Interesting things that you did outside of school?
I’ve done all sorts of interesting things through WriteGirl, a nonprofit based in my neighborhood. My favorite has been facilitating writing workshops for incarcerated young
women.


Most influential faculty member?
Impossible to say. I worked with and for Sarah Shun-lien Bynum and Dr. Carol Branch, and they are supremely influential role models, personally and professionally. I have to point out how influential my poet-colleagues have been, along with Jackie Young, the mastermind of two graduate departments and my supervisor, in shaping my time here.
 

Favorite place in L.A.?
Walking in my neighborhood is pretty great: the 6th Street Bridge, the channelized L.A. River, La Reyna taco stand at 7th and Mateo, and my neighbors at Factory Place, who have become hearth and home.
 

What’s next?
Writing, teaching, editing, choosing additional rent-paying professions. Publishing. Going to the desert when the Perseids fall.
 

Information/tips for future students?
The poetry alums have an ongoing conversation in poetry and in life, and that’s the best reason to attend. Choose your community of colleagues. And explore every neighborhood you can.

Otis College Ranked 6th in Nation by The Economist