DISTANCIA // painting + installation by Erik Otto
@ 143 Chihuahua (Colonia Roma), Mexico City, Mexico
For reasons sometimes even unknown to me, I decided to uproot myself from a comfortable lifestyle in San Francisco to make an honest attempt at making something happen in Mexico City. I came here with nothing but a few promises and an idealistic dream to turn my extended visit into a self-funded artist residency resulting in a solo exhibition.
“And so man, as existing transcendence abounding in and surpassing toward possibilities, is a creature of distance. Only through the primordial distances he establishes toward all being in his transcendence does a true nearness to
things flourish in him.” ― M. Heidegger
Only after setting forth on this new adventure did I realize all the challenges that were ahead. Needless to say, it’s been no easy task to secure a work space in a foreign place without fluency of the native language, but after a few weeks of meeting some key people and expressing my interests I secured access to an abandoned apartment building in a perfect part of town. And so for the next 2 months, I will transform this space to serve as a multi-functional work studio followed by a unique platform to present works that I will create within it — all surrounding the concept of distance.
So it begins…
Greetings everyone, I am currently residing in Mexico City for the winter as I build out a new studio in abandoned building and create a body of work on site that will result in a pop-up solo exhibition. For those that have been following for a while, you may already know that this city has captured my attention which is why the return, but this time I hope to make a worthy contribution to the growing energy down here. More details to follow.
I have been riding my bike, walking, riding trains, and taking cabs to explore this beautiful city every day. I am looking forward to producing some work influenced by my new surrounding environment.
Currently extremely excited to share this preview video for my most recent commission with Grand Hyatt San Francisco in collaboration with Luna Rienne Gallery. All will unveil November 21. Stay tuned…
A couple of months ago, I had the privilege of creating two commission works for Workshop Cafe, a new start-up in downtown San Francisco. The space is a cafe with a pay-as-you-go co-working concept tied in. I feel it’s a wonderful new addition to the otherwise stale downtown area and is now officially open to the public so I thought I’d help spread the word.
mural in the front (photo: Thomas Lawn)
neon & wood installation in the back
photo: Terry Barentsen
Last week I was in Portland Oregon for an all new mural event, Forest For The Trees. Needless to say, it was an amazing experience as amazing murals from artists around the world came together for 1 week to make the town brighter. Looking forward to where things go with this one.
Forest for the Trees NW: 15 artists, 10 murals in 6 days from Michael Lloyd on Vimeo.
Thanks to Michael Lloyd of The Oregonian for this awesome video of the process.
Forest for the Trees from wweek.vimeo on Vimeo.
And another great video recap by Sara Sneath of wweek.com
View all photos of all the work that went down HERE >>
The latest show, Searching For Higher Ground at Luna Rienne Gallery, is up an running through September 23. If you are in the SF area, be sure to check out the show in person. Here’s a few photos and full video below.
Stilt Houses — signed edition of 40
Same As It Never Was – printed in collaboration with Bloom Press in Oakland // signed edition of 50. Available for purchase HERE >>
Searching for Higher Ground from Luna Rienne on Vimeo.
View all available works HERE >>
Something I have been wanting to do for a while, and it’s finally here. With the help from a friend, I now have my very own font. Feel free to download and do what you like with it. Cheers.
Adobe Backroom Gallery in SF has moved! All new location on 24th @ Folsom Street right around the corner from my studio. For those that don’t know, Adobe Books is an awesome bookstore and gallery in one. Since 2001, this spot has been diligently working away to provide the community a great atmosphere to read a book and see beautiful works by local favorites. Always tasteful. Always chill. Join us this Saturday to kick off their new space.
their old spot all clear out. (photo: Jason Yim)
We Had Nothing To Do And We Did It
artists: Benjamin Perkins, Tammy Rae Carland, Christian Davies, Erin Colleen Johnson, Susan O’Malley, & myself.
curated by: Calcagno Cullen
opens: Saturday July 13 // 7-11pm
on view: July 1 – August 23rd, 2013
Adobe Books Backroom Gallery
3130 24th Street (@ Folsom)
San Francisco CA 94110
The very talented Scott La Rockwell paid a visit to my studio to share stories, eat street tacos, and snap a couple flicks to help promote my upcoming show at Luna Rienne Gallery in San Francisco. Here’s a few from the day.
It’s been a while since I have pulled off a solo show in San Francisco, so I plan to make it worth the wait. My next show is coming up quick and I wanted to give the heads up now. There will definitely be some follow up posts revealing a bit of the process that goes behind the work. Save the date. Stay cool. Hope to see you there!
“Unfolding New Horizons” in the studio.
With it, Otto addresses the concept of higher ground. Not a physical place or a final destination, it is the positive perspective that setbacks and challenges are as necessary as victories and breakthroughs. Setting one’s heart on the end goal spontaneously opens the mind to how it can be done. Once this lifestyle choice is made, the real work begins. Life challenges begin, deep fears surface, and with no proper road map, discipline and perspective become paramount.
Otto’s latest work is about visually expressing this ability and freedom. Pulling from his own life and the struggles of his loved ones, his aim is to reflect the innate desire to find resolution in a deliberate way. He is attempting to illustrate the intangible so as to better rationalize it for personal growth. He hopes that creating work from feelings that are difficult to express will spark a deeper connection to the viewer, who may share his aspirations.
More info >>