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Interior landscapes


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POSTED: Sunday, April 05, 2009

Golden heads suspended on dark nets and paintings of unclothed people falling in open space—these are artist Mark Kadota's interpretations of current global events. If you're feeling artistically impaired right about now, it will help to know that his work represents the internal experience of living in a world that seems so unpredictable, facing a future that appears so unstable. “;It's an emotional landscape,”; he says.

Kadota's collection of paintings, sculptures, video and sound installations are on exhibit at the Koa Gallery in “;The Space in Between,”; which runs through April 17. The works are part of a larger show that will open at the Museum het Land van Thorn in the Netherlands in June.

Kadota says that many folks who stop in to see the show comment that he's produced some “;dark work.”; But the artist says his perspective is actually quite different.

The piece with the suspended heads, titled “;Helplessly Hoping,”; for instance, is about “;feeling hopeless, but it's also about letting go,”; he says. “;There's a pile of ashes in that piece, which (calls to mind) the phoenix rising from the ashes, that sort of thing.

“;We're going through a global transition—we can no longer live the way we used to—and so it's about a state of not knowing. This is a time of re-evaluating everything, and we can only do this by looking at things. ... We've been ignoring things, and I think that's part of what led to the problems that exist now. ... Resolution comes when we look at it.”;

Kadota, who's lived part-time in the Netherlands for the last 12 years, shows his work there regularly. But he's gained even broader global attention after being selected as one of six artists to represent the United States at the Beijing Museum during the Olympic games. The works from that show traveled to such places as Italy, Portugal, South Africa, Egypt and Brazil. Next up for Kadota: the Venice Biennale in June.

Koa Gallery is located on the Kapiolani Community College campus. Gallery hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays to Fridays and until 3 p.m. Saturdays. Call 734-9374 or visit koagallery.kcc.hawaii.edu.