• 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


English Composition

Course No Longer Offered

Step 1: Pick Your Terms

Your assignment will vary depending on your instructor, but you will probably be asked to research a subject and compare what you learn about it with its film treatment. The first step should be to get clear on the terms you want to search. This may not be an easy task. Ideas can be expressed in many ways. For instance the topic of "gender" could be researched using terms such as feminism, feminist theory, masculinity, gay, women, woman, men, sexuality, homosexuality, androgyny, etc. Depending on the database used and how it searches, you may have to do multiple searches trying various keywords.

To begin, brainstorm and create a list of possible terms you may use in researching. First, try a preliminary search in a database and look carefully at the results. From the first set of results, you can find other terms you may not have thought of. Add them to your list. Then modify your keywords and your strategy to clarify your topic.

A definition of a term could be a good way to start off a paper. The Oxford English Dictionary would be a good starting point for that.

Step 2: What Kind of Information Do You Want?

Identifying the type of information that you need will help in formulating a search strategy. Think about this and get as specific as you can. Here are some examples:

Information Needed: Try terms like these in various combinations: You could look for: Recommended Database:

A psychological interpretation of the horror film genre Horror, horror tales, cinema, movies, films, interpretation, history, criticism, analysis, morality, morality tale(s), psychoanalysis, psychological, gender, sexuality, feminism, feminist, masculinity, Gore Verbinski, Alfred Hitchcock, etc. Articles in psychological journals, scholarly film journals, or journals about popular culture or chapters in books For articles:

For Books:

Moral or religious tales implied within Westerns Western films, Westerns, heroes in motion pictures, allegory, myth, mythology, Clint Eastwood, morality, masculinity, cinema, movies, films, interpretation, history, criticism, etc. Articles in mythology journals, scholarly film journals, history journals or chapters in books For articles:

For Books:

Analysis of the portrayal of suburbia in popular culture suburban life, suburb(s), suburbia, urban sprawl, social life and customs, America, 1950s, postwar, popular culture, Los Angeles, history Articles in history journals, scholarly film journals, or journals about American studies or chapters in books For articles:

For Books:

Step 3: The Annotated Bibliography

You'll need to create an annotated bibliography or "works cited page" similar to the one you created for Introduction to Visual Culture. There's an excellent guide to Citing Sources online.

Many faculty at Otis require annotations in bibliographies. They're looking for brief descriptions that evaluate the quality and credibility of your sources. Include the following information:

  1. Description of the author's credentials
  2. Type of information the source represents
  3. How the source was located. (database, search engine, terms)
  4. Specifically how the source will be useful in writing your paper. Give examples.

Example of an annotation:

Arnault, Lynne S. "Cruelty, Horror, and the Will to Redemption." Hypatia 18:2 (Spring 2003) 155-88. Wilson OmniFile Full Text Select. Otis College Library. Los Angeles. 11 Sept. 2003.

How located: As a research tool, I used OmniFile through Wilson Web to find this citation. Author's credentials: I first clicked on her name to see if she had written other articles that appear in this database. But there weren't any others. So I looked her up on Google. There's a professor by this name, a Phd. in the Communications Department with a specialty in Feminist Theory at Leymoyne College in NY.

Type of information: This article would be considered "scholarly" because it's long, in-depth. It was somewhat difficult to read and seems to be directed towards educated readers. Also, there were many footnotes. Why what's written will be of benefit in your paper: From the abstract it says that "Americans cherish the idea that good eventually triumphs over evil" and that she argues that "a proper understanding of the moral harm of cruelty calls into question the credibility of popular American idioms of redemption." This seems to be directly related to the role of horror films in Americans culture.

Run Your Paper through Grammarly

Grammarly will assist you with grammar, but also help prevent plagiarism!


The librarians and the library staff are available. Ask for reference/research assistance at any time. It's our job. You're not bothering us.

The LAS department also has tutors available to assist you with the writing or word processing. Start early so that you will have time to avail yourself of these services. We all want to support your learning experience.


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