Muckenthaler Cultural Center

Fullerton, CA


photo, ©1999 John Hazeltine


Kenro Izu: Light Over Ancient Angkor


The exhibition by New York-based Japanese artist Kenro Izu on display at the Muckenthaler Cultural Center brings together an incredibly rich and varied selection of platinum-palladium prints of the ancient religious monuments of Angkor, in Cambodia. The images, captured by a specially designed large format camera, document the powerfully beautiful but also destructive coexistence of ancient stone monuments and the natural forces that surround them. (left: Angkor #208, Ta Prohm, 1995, platinum-palladium print, 53.3 x 106.7 cm)

In Izu's highly textured and detailed photographs, hewn and carved stone buildings are uncharacteristically portrayed as delicate and vulnerable, while the invasive roots of native trees and the unrelenting sun are shown to be the true masters of the land.

The exhibit primarily documents the wealth of architectural and sculptural artistry in the sprawling twelfth-century temple compound at Angkor Wat, an irreplaceable creation ravaged in recent years by extensive looting. Izu builds a lavish narrative that evokes the intensity of the artisans who built these structures and a feeling for the people who moved through the long hallways, ascended regal stairways, and prayed in the meditative chambers of this amazing complex.

In addition to his photographic work at Angkor, done primarily in 1996, Izu has become involved with the residents of this war-ravaged region, and has decided to establish a children's free hospital to care for the constant flow of victims of land mines which lie unseen in the empty fields where local children play. Proceeds from the sale of these photographs will go coward the establishment of the Angkor Hospital for Children.

Light Over Ancient Angkor was created by the Kiyosato Museum of Photographic Arts, Japan, and is circulated by Curatorial Assistance, Inc. Los Angeles.

Read more about the Muckenthaler Cultural Center in Resource Library Magazine.

Please click on thumbnail images bordered by a red line to see enlargements.

This page was originally published in Resource Library Magazine. Please see Resource Library's Overview section for more information. rev. 2/28/11

Search Resource Library for thousands of articles and essays on American art.

Copyright 2011 Traditional Fine Arts Organization, Inc., an Arizona nonprofit corporation. All rights reserved.