Thursday, February 22 , 2018, 8:14 am | Fair 43º


Devon Tsuno’s ‘Los Angeles River’ Exhibit Coming to SBCC Atkinson Gallery

In the “Los Angeles River: Urban Reclamation” exhibition at the Santa Barbara City College Atkinson Gallery, artist Devon Tsuno, an avid fisherman, shares his embedded perspective of the environment from the place where land and water meet rather than an aerial view of the entire Los Angeles River watershed.

While rooted in lifelong observation, Tsuno’s abstract landscapes are synthetic— anomalously colored composites of multiple sites that meld actual places together into a conceptual whole.

In a densely layered build-up of acrylic and spray paint, Tsuno superimposes one plant on top of another, tangibly mirroring the cumulative ecology of his hometown watershed in which native and non-native plants vie for position.

The artist’s work underscores the importance of developing an engaged and critical connection to the place in which we live.

Tsuno is a Los Angeles-native. His abstract paintings, socially engaged projects, artist books and print installations focus on the watershed he grew up around, water use and native vs. non-native vegetation.

Tsuno is a 2017 Santa Fe Art Institute Water Rights Artist-In-Residence, is the 2016 SPArt Community Grantee and was awarded a 2014 California Community Foundation Fellowship for Visual Art.

Tsuno’s long-term interest in bodies of water in the LA area has been central to his work with the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, Big City Forum, Theodore Payne Foundation, the grantLOVE Project and Occidental College.

Devon Tsuno Click to view larger
Devon Tsuno (Atkinson Gallery photo)

Tsuno has exhibited at the Hammer Museum Venice Beach Biennial, Current: LA Water Public Art Biennial, the U.S. Embassy in New Zealand, Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art and Roppongi 605 in Tokyo.

His solo exhibition, “Reclaimed Water” was identified in art ltd. as a Critic’s Picks: 2014 Top 10 exhibitions in LA, and his exhibition “Watershed,” curated by Aandrea Stang, was reviewed in Artillery Magazine and Notes on Looking.

Tsuno earned an MFA from Claremont Graduate University in 2005 and a BFA from California State University, Long Beach in 2003. He is currently an assistant professor of art and design at California State University, Dominguez Hills.

The show opens with a reception for artist from 5-7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 16, and continues through Dec. 2, 2016.

The artist will give a lecture at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 13, in the Physical Science Building Room 101.

Both the exhibit and its related events are free and open to the public.

Sarah Cunningham is the director of the Atkinson Gallery.

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