Amusement has always been the great moving force behind culture.
The title of Kazumi Yoshida’s new show, Amusement, corresponds to the Muses of Ancient Greece, those allegorical protectors of the arts. One can extend this regard to include producers of the arts as well, and to Yoshida, who consistently produces and protects an inimitable vision through figurative and abstract painting, drawing, assemblage, and sculpture. This body of work suggests a playground of the Muses, as it encompasses music, theater, playful tragedy, and serious comedy. The joyous lyricism belongs to Yoshida almost as a brand that carries through all of his aesthetic tropes. Besides eight Muse portraits, with their springy hair and pop-up attributes, are two giant heads, “Orpheus” and “Persona,” the Greek term for “mask.”