John Outterbridge
Mixed-Media Artist
Los Angeles, CA
2011 USA Fellow

USA Gracie Fellow

John Outterbridge is a legendary figure in the Los Angeles art community, particularly within the Black assemblage art scene that developed during the 1960s and 1970s. He attended the Agricultural and Technical University of Greensboro, North Carolina, and The American Academy of Art in Chicago before moving to Los Angeles in 1963. Outterbridge began teaching at the Watts Towers Art Center in 1965 and served as its director from 1975–92, merging his artistic practice with community activism. In his assemblages, Outterbridge combines influences from folk art, Dada, and African sculpture, using discarded materials to create evocative works that confront socio-political themes. Outterbridge received an Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts from Otis College of Art and Design in 1994.

Portrait photo courtesy Tilton Gallery, New York.