Amazing Grace (2001)
single channel video installation

The artist's face is scattered with elements conveying sadness such as painted tears and graffiti around the eyes resembling bruising. The artist is humming the hymn 'Amazing Grace' to enhance these individual elements, and as he does so, strikes his cheek with a ruler to heighten the pain, effectively transporting himself into a territory of deep pain.

This work was an attempt to create the powerful system that results when anything real that tries to enter the frame is rejected, and only the superficial is incorporated. The elements of sadness, the sad energy that's scattered all over the face, are promiscuously intertwined like an orgy. However, it isn't pleasure that's sought through this orgy. Instead there is a compulsion to create, and therefore the subject is a slave who is being whipped to achieve this. While I was creating this work, there was a shocking incident in London in which a 13-year-old boy was stabbed to death by a gang of youths. On the following day, the front page of the newspaper was emblazoned with the headline "So Sad". I used that headline as one of the elements of this work by sticking it to my face. My father, a devout Christian, said that he'd never seen such a disgraceful 'Amazing Grace'. (from Meiro Koizumi, 'Amazing Grace-Meiro Koizumi', in: Koizumi Meiro, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, 2009, pp. 22-23)