May 3, 2021 1:24 PM
by Clove Galilee
The City of Santa Monica established the Studio Residency Program at the Camera Obscura to support the work of local artists, highlight the intersection of fine art and craft, and provide the public with access to a variety of artistic practice and instruction. Artists are chosen for three residency periods a year. The summer/fall residents for 2021 are:
Ray Chang is a Taiwanese-American artist, who received his MFA in Experimental Animation from CalArts in 2020. His work lies in his interest of the mechanization of everyday life. Through experimentation of mechanical sculpture and installation, he explores themes of visual phenomena, automation and broad feelings of ennui and alienation. “It is my inquisitive nature that informs my art-making practice. From film cameras to old toy robots, the analog world has a particular magic that stems from the spirit of invention and innovation. By employing sculpture and installation, I imprint elements I have knowledge about to try and make sense of whatever it is I am trying to examine. I believe that creative minds can approach this world from both technical and artistic perspectives, and when done well, can create works that shift the way we see things. Through the process of tinkering with devices of my own design, I am able to ask questions to myself and provide a means to explore concepts I have difficulty in grasping.” Ray Chang is a Princess Grace Award Winner for Visual Art and recently was a resident artist at Automata in Los Angeles.
Edwin Ushiro is an artist from Hawaii who is currently residing in Southern California. He captures the essence of Hawaii, youth, and nostalgia in a technique that’s uniquely his own. His work resonates with the echoes of his boyhood in the “slow town” of Wailuku on the Hawaiian island of Maui. In his paintings, he recalls the sun-struck days of youth, when the world was fresh and magical, but also explores the eerie folklore indigenous to dark country roads and the boundless depths of the childhood imagination. While structuring his work around the narrative tradition of “talk story” native to the Hawaiian islands, he interweaves the uncanny obake tales of his Japanese heritage. Working in a mixed media technique which involves laboring in ink and acrylic over sheets of Lucite printed with assemblages of his more traditional drawings and paintings, he creates reflections on the past that are luminous and nostalgic, like cherished memories burnished by the passage of time. After earning a BFA with Honors in Illustration from Art Center College of Design, he worked in the entertainment industry as a storyboard artist, concept designer and visual consultant. More recently, he has exhibited in venues worldwide, including Villa Bottini in Italy, Grand Palais in France, the Museum of Kyoto, the Honolulu Museum of Art, and the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. In 2016, Edwin created his first and second mural as a participant of POW! WOW! Hawaii and Long Beach. A monograph of his artwork, entitled Gathering Whispers, has been published by Zero+ Publishing with an Eastern edition published by Diagon Alley in Shanghai, China. Edwin Ushiro’s clients include Sony, Insomniac Games, Fox Animation, Warner Brothers, Disney, The Jim Henson Company, TBWA\Chiat\Day, Wieden + Kennedy, William Morris Endeavor, Macmillan, Simon and Schuster, Sanrio, Toyota Scion, Mitsubishi Motors, Gehry Partners, LLP, Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen, Lady Gaga and Linkin’ Park.
For information about the Camera Obscura Art Lab and its activities, visit santamonica.gov/camera.
Cultural Affairs Supervisor