The Crime of Art looks at San Francisco–based artist Kota Ezawa’s (born 1969) oeuvre using crime as a lens.
The book presents photographs and reproductions from Ezawa’s recent exhibitions in Los Angeles, New York and Amherst featuring remakes of paintings stolen from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. In addition, the book draws connections from his current project to other work from the early 2000s to the present that contemplates crime. Among them are his animated films The Simpson Verdict (2002) and The Unbearable Lightness of Being (2005), as well as his ongoing drawing series The History of Photography Remix, which includes hand-drawn re-creations of historic crime-scene photography. While focusing on a single subject, The Crime of Art brings attention to some of Ezawa’s key projects from the last 15 years, and coincides with a solo exhibition at SITE Santa Fe in 2017.
The work of German-Japanese artist Koto Ezawa depicts iconic moments from art history, film, photography and popular culture, re-conceiving them as animated videos, slide projections, light boxes and prints. Odessa Staircase Redux is a kind of flipbook that revisits the famous sequence from Eisenstein's Battleship Potemkin. The first frame of every cut is hand-redrawn in ink, and the resultant series of images is arranged to form a typology of camera angles.