IZIMA KAORU (b. 1954)
Japanese artist, Izima Kaoru, photographs enchanting images of crime scenes and murder mysteries. His landscapes host real-life models and actresses who play out their fantasies of a perfect death while wearing the perfect outfit from their favorite designer. In his compositions, even murder seems elegant.
Though one might think the model is the subject of his images, they melt into a landscape that doesn’t reveal the actual cause of death. The image of Hasegawa Kyoko wearing Yves Saint Laurent Rive Gauche (411) is a monumental image of a woman lying sprawled across trash bags in an empty alleyway filled with fluorescent lighting. The photograph is taken from an eagle’s point of view, just above the roofs on either side of the street. Some may think she jumped off of one of the buildings, or that she passed out and died from a drug or alcohol induced stupor. It is just as likely, though, that her body was dumped after her murder just like the rest of the trash. The glassy eyes of the model no longer look into anything or anybody, and share no information about her demise. Clearly, there are clues, suspicions, and even allusions; however Izima Kauro never reveals the mystery.
Kaoru began his career as a fashion photographer, and currently acts as editor in chief of the magazine he founded, Zyappu. It comes as no surprise that Izima Kauro has exhibited his work in solo shows across the globe; in Japan, the United States, Germany, England, Italy, and Luxembourg, among others. His work and his international exhibitions remind us of how variously we view death and beauty, and pose the question “Why can’t a corpse be beautiful?”