MFA Fine Art, 2018
Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles, California

BFA Studio Art, 2004
CSU East Bay, Hayward, California

BFA Graphic Arts, 2004
CSU East Bay, Hayward, California


2023 NOMAD Art Fair Los Angeles

QIPO Art Fair Mexico City

Die Kunstkammer at Discover Torrance

Night Moves at the Bendix Building, Los Angeles

Die Kunstammer at Adams Square Mini Park, Glendale Libraries, Arts, and Culture, Glendale, CA

Head-On Collision, LAST Projects, Los Angeles, California (4 artist show)

This Thin Utopia, LAST Projects, Los Angeles, California (with Ernest Rosenthal)

Window Dressing, Cerritos College Art Gallery, Los Angeles, California

Cambiaformas, Fundación Sebastian, Mexico City, Mexico

Ghost Prints II, Bolsky Gallery, Los Angeles, California

Ghost Prints, LAST Projects, Los Angeles, California

Excesstential Style, LAST Projects, Los Angeles, California (with Jonathan Johnson)

        • Halloween ‘16, San Diego Art Institutue

Blue Moon, LAST Projects, Los Angeles, California (with Nora Keyes)

Psycho-Specific Unearthings, NWC Gallery, Chicago, Illinois

Tragedy and Automatism, SOIL Gallery, Seattle, Washington


Loto Ball, How to Destroy the Universe Festival, Oakland, California

Loto Ball, La Zurda, Complejo Cultural Los Pinos, Mexico City

Holes, Cerritos College, Cerritos, California

Mariana, Highways, Santa Monica, California

Mariana, Electric Lodge, Venice, California

Saturnine, Church of Fun, Los Angeles, California

Loto Ball, MidPoint Music Festival, Cincinnati, Ohio

Loto Ball, Drop Dead Festival, Vilnius, Lithuania

Stupid Dans (1,10,5), i^3 Hypermedia, Chicago, Illinois

Loto Ball, Drop Dead Festival, New York, New York

Communication, Spaceland, Los Angeles, California

Awards, Residencies & Public Art

Winter 2023 / 2024 Residency, California Creative Learning Academy, Los Angeles

2018 Residency, Sebastian Foundation, Mexico City, Mexico

2017 Public Art, Interactive Mural, Cerritos College, Los Angeles, CA

2016 Study Grant, Anderson Ranch, Snowmass Village, Colorado

2011 Grant, VSA Grant for Kennedy Center Installation (with Arts of Life)

2011 Public Art,  Mural, Chase Park, Chicago (with Arts of Life)

2011 Grant, CAAP Grant, Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs

2009 Grant, CAAP Grant, Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs

2007 Public Art,  Mural, Bloomingdale Trail, Chicago (with Arts of Life)


Justice Arts Coalition “Inside & Out Exhibition Spotlight: Karim Shuquem, Lesley Rae Burdick, and Edee Allynnah”

Kemp, Audrey. Learning Blocks:
Karim Shuquem on ‘Die Kunstkammer’
”. Janky Smooth. November 7, 2020

“Meet Karim Shuquem of Graphic
Non-Violence”. L.A. Voyage. July 2020.

Hirug, Alexander.
“R.k. Shuquem”, Kolko Mag, Siberia, Russia, October 2015.

Petrusiak, Leah. “Saved by Rock 'n' Roll”, The Chicago Reader, Chicago, IL, vol. 41, number 6, November 2, 2011, pp. 10-16.

Nattsol, Pall. “Loto Ball: My Songs are Very Dream-Oriented”, Grave Jibes, St. Petersburg, RU. August 15, 2011.

Lynette Kalsnes, Interview, WBEZ Radio, Chicago, IL, July 27, 2010.

Weikel, Rebekah. “The Art and Music of Loto Ball”, Penny Ante, Los Angeles, CA. Summer 2009.

Skibra, Daniel. “Interview with Loto Ball”, Augenmusik, January 26, 2007

Lanthier, Lucas. “The Loto Ball Show Wild West Adventure Ride”, Drop Dead Magazine, New York, NY. Fall 2007.

Stockdale, Chad. “The Phantom Limb in the Wax Museum”, KDViations, Davis, CA. Winter, 2002.

Building upon a 30 year history as stage performer and rock singer, I create installations, sculptures, drawings, paintings, performances and prints that have relationship with staging, temporality, and process. I had my first solo art exhibit in 2011 with a series of 12 automatic drawings. After showing these, I began to view them as documents of an experiential process that happened in my basement apartment in Chicago. I became interested in finding ways for the artwork to do more than just document a process.

The existential maxim “existence precedes essence” is key for me , as present-moment experience must always be considered. This can come into play in terms of a feeling of potentiality or connection to a hidden element or it can be connect and engage via connected processes, i.e. pulling prints from engraved sculptures or making paintings from leftover prints.  

It is exciting for me to be able to marry the metaphor of the imagery to the metaphor of the material. For example, a tarot deck perfectly encapsulates what I am after with my artwork. The tarot deck is made up of 78 captivating metaphorical images but it is not still. It requires a person to shuffle the deck and continually find new meanings through discovered relationships. The artwork is continually being stirred up and reconfigured, new connections are continually made, different synapses are firing.

My Cubes sculpture of 2016 was a turning point, when on a whim I decided to glue 48 drawings on panel onto eight 6-inch wooden cubes. I found that stacking the blocks inherently held the action of play. Whenever it is shown, I ask the preparator to stack them as they wish. Even after it has been arranged and is on view for display, I have been told that viewers desire to lift the blocks to be able to see all six sides and also see the blocks in different formations. This desire for ‘something else’ is very important to me. I want the charge of potential to be inherent in everything I do.

The desire to retain a ‘charge of potential’ could make certain works perhaps appear ‘unfinished,’ but I’d say that comes with the territory. One of my pieces in particular is meant to be continually worked on and always remain unresolved. It is made up of over 100 carved and enameled empty wooden boxes that are stacked differently with each showing. The carvings depict structural barriers and conveyances as well as the actors of a poetic drama. New carvings are continually added and the assemblage changes shape with each showing as the arrangement is always different. It is meant to embody Deleuze’s becoming: we are never finished becoming who we are.

My imagery tends to be symbolic and expressionistic. I do not draw, paint, or carve specific people usually, but rather players in some sort of poetic drama. I’ve often pulled reference imagery from manuals or instructional diagrams. I see the individuals as actors performing their respective tasks. Hands and feet can also function as stand-ins for the human. I try to achieve the feeling of a dream, something that has a strong feeling of meaning, but the meaning is more like a hint rather than a shout.

I’m interested in achieving the effect of a feeling - that there is something else that is not seen, some meaning on the tip of your tongue or the back of your mind, some other character behind the wall perhaps, I’ve often depicted structural barriers or conveyances; portals, prisons, stairs, walls, cages, hallways. Bodies traverse these pathways, but the structures themselves are analog to the body and the inherent limitations of our skin, our identities, and all the holes, loopholes, stretchiness, and flexibility that counteracts our edges and limitations.

My interest is in an attached sense of what is on the other side of that wall or the other end of the tunnel. I’ve always been preoccupied with the feeling of searching, of reaching, or of trying to pass through a barrier into some unknown other place, whether that’s physical, spiritual, or existential.