Erik Otto is an American mixed-media artist working in the creative disciplines of painting, sculpture and installation. Otto has held exhibitions nationally in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Washington DC and internationally in Vancouver, Mexico City, and Berlin. He was selected for the SF Recology Artist-in-Residence Program, received the VSCO Artist Initiative Grant, and produced work for YBCA Bay Area Now 7. He currently has work held in the private collections of the Grand Hyatt, Microsoft, LinkedIn, One Medical Group, and Uber Technologies. Known to take life-changing risks, Otto once self initiated a 6-month artist residency in Mexico City that resulted in a solo exhibition in an abandoned building just prior to it’s demolition.

Otto was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, currently based in New York City, with studios in Brooklyn, NY and San Francisco, CA.


My artwork hosts an environment for controlled chaos — often a balance of improvisational layering combined with careful construction. The process represents freedom and understanding while expressing the notion that life is constantly happening and becoming, most often beyond our recognition.

In addition to being a visual artist, I define myself as a self-taught drummer, avid cyclist, and someone committed to a spirit guided life seeking wisdom from both the natural and supernatural world. As result of these influences, I see great significance in the harmonious shape of the circle often making it the most recognizable form seen throughout my work.

In an effort to understand the remarkable abilities of the human eye, my new work turns its focus towards exploring vision itself. The advancement of my work introduces new color combinations, graphic abstraction, and illumination to portray concepts focusing on the visual system and the various physiological components involved therein. Since being born with a severe case of myopia, I am acutely interested in the result of our human experience that is greatly based on visual perception and my aim is to develop non-literal landscapes that induce emotion and curiosity through depictions that challenge our ever shifting perspectives affected by sight.


384 Broadway, New York, NY, From One Place to the Next
SummerSchool, San Francisco, CA, From One Place to the Next

Luna Rienne Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Rising Sun

Heron Arts, San Francisco, CA, Rising Tides

Burrard Arts Foundation, Vancouver, BC, Canada, In Search Of
ReUrbano, Mexico City, Mexico, Distancia
Luna Rienne Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Searching For Higher Ground

933 Treat Studios, San Francisco, CA, A Full Days Work

White Walls, San Francisco, CA, Project Room

White Walls, San Francisco, CA, Tomorrow is Never Promised (1)
Fabric8, San Francisco, CA, Tomorrow is Never Promised (2)
Recology SF, San Francisco, CA, The Last Shall Be First

Beta Lounge, Berkeley, CA, WORKS
Charmingwall Gallery, New York, NY, Silence Speaks Volumes

Design Within Reach, Palo Alto, CA, Recent Works
The Shooting Gallery, San Francisco, CA, The Sea of Change
Gallery Three, San Francisco, CA, The Calm Before the Storm

The Shooting Gallery, San Francisco, CA, A Long Way
Cal State San Marcos, San Marcos, CA, Rooted Dreams


South Street Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, All In
Heron Arts, San Francisco, CA, Together
Athen B Gallery, San Francisco, CA, 2-Year Anniversary Show

Prjct OMNI, Traverse City, MI, A Theory of Contemplation
The Yard, Brooklyn, NY, Recent Works (curated by Silence is Accurate)
Marin MOCA, Navato, CA, Waste Not
Athen B Galery, Oakland, CA, New Radius
Joseph Gross Gallery, New York, NY, Night & Day
Space236, San Francisco, CA, The Balance

Athen B Gallery, Oakland, CA, CO-LAB
Inner State Gallery, Detroit, MI, Lyric III
Ampersand International Arts, Mexico City, Mexico, Carry On

YBCA, San Francisco, CA, Bay Area Now 7

SFO Museum, San Francisco, CA, The Art of Recology
Hyatt Regency Hotel, San Francisco, CA, Project Grand SF
Adobe Backroom Gallery, San Francisco, CA, We Had Nothing To Do And We Did It
Southern Exposure, San Francisco, CA, PARADE
Asterisk Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Future Culture

Fabric8, San Francisco, CA, Color Theory
Project One Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Symbols
Ace Museum, Los Angeles, CA, All in for the 99%
323 East Gallery, Detroit, MI, Lyric 2012

Gallerie NeuroTitan, Berlin, Germany, Permaculture
Mallick Williams & Co., New York, NY, Spectrum
941 Geary Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Indoor Mural Project
Double Punch Gallery, San Francisco, CA, There is No Telling
Gallery Hijinks, San Francisco, CA, The Letter Collector

Primary Flight / Art Basel Miami, Miami, FL, Fresh Produce
Katzen Art Center, Washington DC, Ghost Market x Catalyst
Re:Form School, New York, NY, Re:Form School
941 GEARY, San Francisco, CA, A New Beginning
Intersection For the Arts, San Francisco, CA, 45th Anniversary
Manifest Equality, Los Angeles, CA, Manifest Equality
White Walls Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Never a Dull Moment
Fabric8, San Francisco, CA, 1(4) Years

The Shooting Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Terrestrial Syndrome
Intersection for the Arts, San Francisco, CA, Annual Benefit Show
Shadow’s Space, Philadelphia, PA, Climb in the Back Window

Charmingwall, New York City, NY, Tiny Big Top Show
Reaves Gallery, San Francisco, CA, If These Walls Could Speak

Project:Gallery, Culver City, CA, Head in the Trees

Ayden Gallery, Vancouver, BC, Canada, Brave Art
Compound Gallery, Portland, OR, Supernal
Thinkspace, Los Angeles, CA, Square Foot Show
Corey Helford Gallery, Culver City, CA, Halloween Show
Thinkspace, Los Angeles, CA, Triamese

The Lab 101 Gallery, Culver City, CA, The Birdhouse Show
Gallery Anno Domini, San Jose, CA, Fresh Produce


Burrard Arts Foundation, Vancouver, BC, Canada

ReUrbano, Mexico City, Mexico

Recology San Francisco, AIR Program, San Francisco, CA


VSCO Artist Initiative, grant recipient

SFAC Art in Storefronts grant recipient


Grand Hyatt, San Francisco, CA

Microsoft, Seattle, WA


UBER Technologies, Palo Alto, CA

Google, Sunnyvale, CA

Gensler Architecture, San Francisco, CA

Martinkovic Milford Architects, San Francisco, CA

Studio O+A, San Francisco, CA

LinkedIn, Sunnyvale, CA & Omaha, NE

One Medical Group, San Francisco, CA

Red Bull, San Francisco, CA

Urban Outfitters Inc.

Pow! Wow! Hawaii, Honolulu, HI

JanSport, USA

MASH, San Francisco, CA

Blue Line Pizza, Bay Area, CA

Central Market Community Benefit District, San Francisco, CA

Workshop Cafe, San Francisco, CA