Events
  • 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.

  • Emily Raboteau’s nonfiction work Searching for Zion was named a best book of 2013 by the Huffington Post and the San Francisco Chronicle, and was a finalist for the Hurston Wright Legacy Award, grand prize winner of the New York Book Festival, and a winner of a 2014 American Book Award. She is the author of a novel, The Professor’s Daughter, and her fiction and essays have been published and anthologized in Best American Short Stories, the New York Times, The New Yorker, Tin House, Buzzfeed, LitHub, The Guardian, Guernica, Virginia Quarterly, The Believer, and Salon. Other honors include a Pushcart Prize, the Chicago Tribune’s Nelson Algren Award, and fellowships from the NEA, the Lannan Foundation, and the MacDowell Colony. Raboteau teaches creative writing at City College in New York.

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Toy Design

The Woman Behind the Monster (Truck)

Bright green postcards and the toothy grin of a monster truck announced the 2017 Annual Exhibition, which will open to the public this Saturday, May 13. The bright, detailed model of the featured monster truck puppet, or CryptoTruck, was the highlight of  Monique Givens' ('16 Toy Design) own display at last year's Annual Exhibition.

Charlotte Hitz: Making Joyful Experiences

Since its founding in 1972, The Group has worked to fund scholarships for deserving students of Otis College of Art and Design. The awardees met with members of The Group and presented examples of their work at The Group's Annual Scholarship Luncheon on February 16, 2017. One student from each of the seven undergraduate disciplines is chosen for the scholarship, and each week, we'll be highlighting a different awardee as we countdown to the 2017 Commencement Ceremony. 

 

Faculty Dave Schultze Receives Toy of the Year Nomination

The ‘Black Light Illuminator’, created by Toy Design faculty Dave Schultze, has been nominated for the prestigious ‘Toy of the Year’ honor by the Toy Industry Association (TIA) jury.

For Schultze, owner and founder of SchultzeWORKS designstudio, this is the third Toy of the Year nomination in the last four years. The Illuminator has also been awarded the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Seal Award for 2015.

Alumnus Kris Paulson

Kris Paulson ('03) and a four-person team of young designers at Big Monster Toys in Chicago stormed the toy design world during the 2005 holiday season with their wildly popular animatronic MP3 player named 'iZ'. Time magazine listed the iZ as one of 2005's top inventions. The alien eyes of iZ echo with the music's rhythms, and its horn pulses in rainbow colors.

Alumna Meleina Mayhew

Since graduating from Otis in 2000, Melaina Mayhew (’00, Toy Design) has worked with many of the leaders in the toy industry, including Mattel, Lego, Applause, and Equity Marketing. She also worked on an array of character licenses such as Hello Kitty, Sesame Street, Scooby-Doo, Finding Nemo and other Disney properties.

Toymaker Brittney Crump's Bold Style

As a child, Brittney Crump was asked the standard question of "What do you want to be when you grow up?” She consistently replied that she wanted to be an artist.
 
Prior coming to Otis Brittney expressed her creativity in several ways - drawing comics, designing t-shirts, and sewing plush toys. She says that she had her hands in too many pots, but eventually found her focus after receiving pictures from parents of their children with her creations.
 

Toy Design Alumnus Raphael Bencosme Shines at Razor

Toy Design alumnus Raphael Bencosme graduated in 2013 and has been working at Razor USA located in Cerritos, CA as one of their key designers. While he was still a student in Toy Design he had the great opportunity to intern at Razor and made such a positive mark that directly after graduating he was offered a position as designer in their advancing New Brands group.
 

Toy Design Chair Deborah Ryan in Long Beach Press Telegram

Designers came to toys from varied careers

By Jordan England-Nelson
 
Actively seeking a career in toys is a relatively new phenomenon. Toy design schools didn’t exist a generation ago, which means most veterans of the toy industry got into the business by accident. Product and industrial design is a common background for toy designers, as is fashion, illustration and animation.
 
Here are the stories of six designers who never could have predicted they would be working in toys as adults:
 

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