Devon Tsuno

Devon Tsuno is keenly interested in the vital issue of water and water use, topics of crucial concern to the desert community of Borrego Springs. Tsuno worked with Seley Farms, one of the largest and oldest family-owned agricultural businesses in Borrego Springs, on a project called Desert Fruit highlighting the important role that the farm and its crops play in the fabric of the town—economically, socially, and environmentally.

Tsuno’s installation took the form of a two-fold offering for visitors—first, the gift of grapefruit, the famously delicious Seley Reds grown in the local orchard; and second, the gift of information about the farm, its crop, the labor force that makes it possible, and its environmental impact and future.

Special thanks to Pedro Fuerte, Mauricio Fuerte, Oswaldo Fuerte, Jim Seley, Mike Seley, and Zane Smiley at Seley Ranches; Martha Deichler, Stephen Ryan, and the Borrego Unified School District; Araceli Preigo; Robert Huerta; and Delfino Chojoian.

Tsuno is a Los Angeles-native. His spray paint and acrylic paintings, installations, and community projects focus on water, native vs. non-native plants, agriculture and Japanese American history. Tsuno’s long-term interest in issues of access to public space, fishing and bodies of water in the LA area has been central to his work with the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, The Music Center, Theodore Payne Foundation, and the grant love Project.

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 has exhibited extensively in the US and abroad at the Hammer Museum Venice Beach Biennial, Current: LA Water Public Art Biennial, Indianapolis Museum of Contemporary Art, Denk Gallery, U.S. Embassy in New Zealand, and Gallery Lara in Tokyo.

His work has been featured in Artillery Magazine, X-TRA Journal and Notes on Looking. He received an MFA from Claremont Graduate University in 2005 and a BFA from California State University Long Beach in 2003. Tsuno is currently an Assistant Professor of Art at California State University Dominguez Hills where he is also founder/director of the PRAXIS art engagement program.