There is so much joy in the work of Los Angeles-based sculptor Kazi that it’s hard to not want to jump through the screen and live inside the world of his claymation – not to mention collecting all of his sculptures. With a knack for using a range of different clays, including plasticine, polymer clay, epoxy clay and resin, Kazi is a “clay scientist,” he tells It's Nice That, who can apply clay in unique and innovative ways. Often, his whacky work will focus on “super exaggerated versions of nature, society, individuals, expressions and violence”, as well as giving inanimate objects their own unique character.
Kazi's work is not just about creating something beautiful or aesthetically pleasing. “Sometimes my work is a political statement, and at other times, it's an abstract expression based on a colour palette I find appealing,” he says. Kazi sees life through a cinematic lens, which comes through in the vibrant saturation of his work. His pieces all come from the same world, inspired by vintage cartoons, particularly their animation and art style.
Interestingly, Kazi's art is influenced by horror and sci-fi from the 70s and 90s, “particularly the practical special effects that had really cool textures,” he says. It's clear his work is meant to feel slightly uncomfortable and nostalgic, somewhat like a fever dream that is equal parts uncanny as it is wonderful. Overall, Kazi's art is a reflection of his one-of-a-kind vision of the world, and the desire to express it in a style that's true to himself.
Kazi: George Clinton on Trombipulations, commissioned by Lauren Halsey (Copyright © Kazi, 2022)
About the Author
Joey is a freelance design, arts and culture writer based in London. They were part of the It’s Nice That team as editorial assistant in 2021, after graduating from King’s College, London. Previously, Joey worked as a writer for numerous fashion and art publications, such as HERO Magazine, Dazed, and Candy Transversal.