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  • 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.


Marlena Donohue: 2007-08 Faculty Development Grant Report


As critic and scholar particularly interested in the 60s as that crucible epoch that gives rise to counter culture and Feminism, I was invited to attend as a critic and correspondent to the Monitor in Boston, the major Beat retrospective at the Whitney Museum in 1995 titled, "Beat Culture and the New America, 1950-1965."

I attended the Press opening and a variety of lectures and was drawn immediately to a brilliantly painted, very eccentric oil of a famous strip joint in North Beach executed by an artist named Michael Bowen; I had no knowledge of this artist and this shocked me.

Beat Culture and the New America 1950-1965

Cover of the exhibition catalog, Beat Culture and the New America, 1950-1965

I am widely familiar with almost all Beat work done in the early 50s in Los Angeles and then in the late 50s and 60s in San Francisco. I had not seen this very fine work before. Another of Bowen’s paintings was in fact used to illustrate the Time magazine review of the exhibition.

I was further intrigued after having been invited to a press lecture at the Whitney where this rather raving artist spoke with vivid and historically accurate anecdotal detail about his intense and long term contacts with seminal figures of the 60s both in Los Angeles and in San Francisco: Tim Leary; William S. Burroughs, Allen Ginsberg, Edward Kienholz, John McCracken, Allan Cohen, the poet Ferlinghetti. The more interesting fact to me was that Michael Bowen’s name reoccurred in passing in ephemera of the era, like letters by and within the inner circle of Beat culture, but neither his work nor his art were in any official historical record of the Beat generation.