Crucifixion Statue of Kanye West Unveiled on Hollywood Boulevard Ahead of Oscars Weekend - NBC Southern California

Crucifixion Statue of Kanye West Unveiled on Hollywood Boulevard Ahead of Oscars Weekend

Los Angeles-based street artist Plastic Jesus titled the piece "False Idol," referencing the building up and tearing down of celebrities

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    Plastic Jesus

    Ahead of Oscars weekend, a gold-painted statue depicting Kanye West as Christ on the cross popped up for a short time Wednesday in Hollywood.

    The life-sized crucifixion statue titled "False Idol" depicts the rapper as Jesus Christ, with nails in his hands, wearing a crown of thorns, gold chains, a cloth and Yeezy sneakers. 

    The provocative work of art is by Plastic Jesus, a Los Angeles-based street artist who is known for his political and cultural art. 

    The Academy Awards honors the best in film every year and is often a time of celebration for Hollywood's elite. 

    But, Plastic Jesus told NBC4 his art "focuses on the side of Hollywood that's often forgotten" and touches on topics such as drug abuse, mental health and idolatry. 

    Celebrities are often elevated and treated like "God-like figures," Plastic Jesus said. And, when they [celebrities] do show their humanity "we then crucify them." 

    The artist referenced West's "brilliance" as a musician and West's recent hospitalization after abruptly canceling the remaining dates of his Saint Pablo tour.

    While this year's work focuses on the public's obsession with celebrity, Plastic Jesus has touched on other topics during Oscar week in years past.

    Previous installations include a life-size Oscar statue snorting cocaine on all fours in 2015 and an Oscar statuette working a stripper pole in 2016.

    For those who missed the Kanye statue at the corner of Hollywood Boulevard and La Brea Avenue, the piece will be on display Saturday at "Anesthesia: The Art of Oblivion." 

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    (Published Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018)

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