Kojo Marfo (born 1980) is a Ghanaian artist based in London. Marfo developed his interest in art and visual culture through traditional Akan artifacts, sculptures and carvings that he was exposed to as a child growing up in Ghana. These artifacts still remain a vital source of strength for Marfo. He references traditional Akan art to highlight social issues, such as inequalities, religion, politics, and spiritualism. After travelling to New York and London, Marfo has developed a unique style that encompasses his wide range of influences in an effort to express his experiences and comment on society.
Marfo’s work seeks to re-establish the immense richness that is lacking in mainstream representations of African people. He hopes to explore a self-referential perspective of the Black image by creating figurative abstractions that showcase the beauty woven into Africa’s social and geographical fabric.
“I want people to see my work as a reflection of my Akan culture and my struggles living in the West. I want my artwork to create a connection with people, to be a symbol for everyone to relate to,” Marfo said. “No matter what you are going through, or where you live, I want my art to help people think and reflect on their inner lives and how it relates to the wider world.”
JD Malat Gallery visited the studio of Ghanaian artist Kojo Marfo to find out more about his practice and the inspiration behind his work.
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