Since its commercial emergence in the 1930s, animation in the United States was treated as a category of cartoons. Even animation that found its audience outside of the mainstream made use of stereotypical cartoon attributes such as narrativity and caricature. American artists Robert Breer and Lawrence Jordan were exceptions, producing bodies of work that investigate animation as a visual language outside the cartoon tradition. Today, thanks to consumer video and animation software, a growing number of artists in the US and elsewhere are reimagining animation as an art form on par with other contemporary art practices.
Kota Ezawa has produced his own animations since 2000. Coming out of studies in Fine Art programs in Europe and the US, his animations deal with abstraction and mediated perceptions of reality through reconstructions of existing films and videos. In this lecture, Ezawa will present his work in the context of 20th Century avant-garde animation.
Ezawa's work has been shown in solo exhibitions at the Hayward Gallery in London, Artpace in San Antonio, The Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Murray Guy Gallery in New York and Haines Gallery in San Francisco. He participated in exhibitions at Museum of Modern Art in New York, Whitney Museum of American Art, SF MOMA, Andy Warhol Museum and Musee d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris. His animations were included in the 2005 Shanghai Biennale and will be presented in the upcoming Sao Paulo Biennial. He received a Tiffany Foundation Award in 2003 and the SECA Art Award in 2006. Ezawa is Assistant Professor of Media Arts at the California College of the Arts.
-- As of 4/7/08