Stephen Anderson was born and raised in Southern California
Stephens creativity sprouted early in his life as he made his own toys out of pipe-cleaners, Styrofoam balls, pant and a mix of fabric and found objects.
Early artistic influence included his Grandma who painted as a hobby. And during his last year at CSULB his fine art painting instructor who encouraged to paint from the heart, and less from the mind. Advice which proved cathartic as to pour the emotional turmoil of the end of a long term relationship with his first girlfriend who he met during high school.
After received his BFA from California University Long Beach, and feeling, ‘now what to do with an art degree?’. He sought out local artist groups: First becoming a member and a past president of Southern California Artists (SCA), and later applied and was approved to join the artist run non-profit gallery the Orange County Center for Contemporary Art (OCCCA). Which he visited during college as a class field trip, and the experience stuck in his mind as a ‘cool’ place to one day belong to. These organizations allowed him to network with fellow artists and become part of the art community. Leading to develop his artwork and exhibit domestically and internationally.
Now as the executive director for OCCCA the past 4 years, he has raised the quality, knowledge and prestige of the center, opening it up to community collaborations and events, along with art exhibitions and musical events including the annual ‘Santa Ana Noise Fest’ featuring experimental and noise genre performers, now in its 6th year. This musical event has lead him to created his own experimental noise project under the name: Jesus is Dead. The title coming from an element of a large neon and text based multi-video installation, titled “ Distilled Truths’. He has performed at several venues and noise festivals.
While art making and the art community is a large part of Stephens life, one has to pay the bills, and that is done (as with most artists) with a day job, of which he is co-proprietor and art director of a company that designs and manufactures various clothing apparel, along with taking freelance graphic and website design projects.
Currently working on new artwork for an exhibition, and preparing for a noise festival in the dessert, juggling all of the above keeps Stephen busy with hopes that his artwork will be seen in major museums and galleries, and getting his ‘15 minutes of fame.’