The Riverside Art Museum is proud to continue an ongoing series of mini-exhibition features highlighting artist-members who have received awards in previous Members’ Exhibitions. Mike O’Brien was one of three Honorable Mention award winners back in 2014.
My interest in photography began when my high school teacher in Arequipa, Peru, inserted what appeared to be a blank sheet of paper in a liquid. In the darkness of the room, barely illuminated by a red light, an image appeared on the paper. It was like magic and I was hooked on photography.
I have been making photographs since then. At the University of Wisconsin in Superior I photographed for the campus paper, for the campus university public relations, department and for my own interest.
I took photography courses at RCC and SBVC. I realized the importance of Art History so I attended courses in Art History at UCR. I was influenced by the artists presented to me in those courses. You might say I stole from the premier artists and was influenced by their art works.
I have had solo exhibits in Peru, Ecuador, Costa Rica, and Maryland. These photographs evoke my first contact with photography and were taken in the 1980s when Arequipa changed from a small town into a large metropolis that I no longer recognized. Most of the sites depicted no longer exist.