Review: The scenes of a crime: Kota Ezawa revisits the Gardner Museum theft
We should be bored with Kota Ezawa by now. For more than a decade, the Japanese German artist has reduced familiar photographs and videos to arrangements of flat, simple shapes. Everything he does looks like a Flash animation from the late ‘90s, yet Ezawa always finds a way to make this technique seem, if not new, then relevant.
His latest exhibition at Christopher Grimes looks at the unsolved 1990 theft of $500 million in artwork from Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum. It is surprisingly emotional.
Glowing faintly, the abstracted images appear to hover on the wall. These “ghost works” are clearly not replicas, but they look just enough like the originals to evoke what has been lost. The public may never see these masterpieces again; Ezawa’s work becomes a kind of memorial.
Christopher Grimes Gallery, 916 Colorado Ave., Santa Monica, (310) 587-3373. Closed Sundays and Mondays. www.cgrimes.com
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