Project Native Informant

Dozie Kanu

Appropriating found objects and refashioning them to new aesthetics, Dozie Kanu creates sculptures and photography that are inherently disobedient and stubbornly slippery. They resist classification and exist instead as communicative or performative objects. Kanu’s ongoing investigation into the limits of form, functionality, materiality and usefulness are often filtered through a personal lens drawn from the artist’s lived experiences.

In the artist’s debut solo exhibition at Project Native Informant, Owe Deed, One Deep, 2020, every sculpture remixes and modifies found objects, with the visible rust as a reminder of how readily items are discarded once they are deemed no longer productive. The repurposing of objects deemed useless, the artist honours and reanimates the people whose labour gave them function. In extending the lives of these unwanted items, he perpetuates the existence of those who brought them into being. His memorialisation is a site of collective mourning of which has not yet ceased to exist, acknowledging that the pathways and legacies of the oppressive systems of the past continue to characterize the present.

Born and raised in Houston, Texas to Nigerian immigrant parents, Kanu initially intended to study film directing but shifted his focus to production design for film and theatre, receiving his BFA from the School of Visual Arts, New York, in 2016. Dozie Kanu’s first solo institutional exhibition was at the Studio Museum of Harlem in 2019.

Last year, Kanu opened his second solo exhibition at Project Native Informant, Tinted Spirit. In May 2022, the public sculpture commission On Elbows was shown as part of the Public Art Fund exhibition Black Atlantics. In September 2022, Cordyceps Gaud Adversary opened at Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen, Dozie Kanu's first solo European institutional exhibition. 

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Solo Exhibitions
2024Preenchendo Vazios, Lumiar Cité, Lisbon
2022Galerie Francesca Pia, Zurich
Cordyceps Gaud Adversary, Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen2021Tinted Spirit, Project Native Informant, LondonBlood Type, Performance Space, New York
to prop and ignore, Manual Arts, Los Angeles
value order [gentrify.pt], Madragoa, Lisbon
2020Owe Deed, One Deep, Project Native Informant, London
2019FUNCTION, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York
ARS JUS PAX, JTG Detroit Project, Woods Cathedral, Detroit
2018Humane Alternatives, Soft Opening, London
Group Exhibitions
2024Summer Show 2024, Fondation Beyeler, Basel
2023Mimesis, Galerie Barbara Weiss, Berlin
Hoi Köln Part 2: In the Belly of the Machine, Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne
Hoi Köln Part 1: Welcoming The Space, Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne
Can't See, Sequences Biennial, ReykjavíkPNI @ 10, Project Native Informant, London
Hans-Ulrich Obrist Archive, Chapter 1: Édouard Glissant, LUMA Westbau, Zurich
GUMBO, Anthony Gallery, Chicago
Hang Don’t Cut, Slavs and Tatars, Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler, Berlin
P-O-T-B-O-I-L-E-R-S, Quinn Harrelson Gallery, Los Angeles
Enzo Mari, C-Mine, Genk
The Shape of Memory, Oregon Center for Contemporary Art, Portland
2022Conversation Pieces, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco
Black Atlantic, Public Art Fund, New York
2020Crack Up – Crack Down, Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Warsaw
Group Show, Project Native Informant, London
Enzo Mari, curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist, Triennale di Milano, Milan
Recoil (with Cudelice Brazelton IV), International Waters, New York
2019Transformer: A Rebirth of Wonder, 180 The Strand, London
Crack Up – Crack Down, The Biennial of Graphic Arts, MGLC, Ljubljana
2017Early Works, 89+ and Google Arts & Culture, New Galerie, Paris
Midtown, Salon 94 and Maccarone Gallery, Lever House, New York
2016Clear Eyes, 95 Avenue B, New York
In Cylinder, SVA Gallery 21st St, New York
Special Projects
2023Bal d'Afrique, Byredo | Salone del Mobile, Capsule Plaza, Milan
2022Safe House, Scenography for the Standing on the Corner Art Ensemble, Bourse de Commerce, Paris
Publications
2023Dozie Kanu, Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen and Motto Books, Geneva, Berlin
202200 Magazine Magazine, Self-Published
Public Collections
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Cordyceps Gaud Adversary, 2022
Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Cordyceps Gaud Adversary, 2022
Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Cordyceps Gaud Adversary, 2022
Neuer Essener Kunstverein, Essen

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
On Elbows in Black Atlantic, 2022
Public Art Fund, New York

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Tinted Spirit, 2022
Project Native Informant, London

Dozie Kanu

Detail: (un)console the soul from yesterday, yesteryear, yesterlife

2022
Steel and limestone
140 x 128 x 70 cm
55 1/8 x 50 3/8 x 27 1/2 in

Dozie Kanu

Dozitron HQ

2022
Each: 62.5 x 50 x 3 cm
24 5/8 x 19 3/4 x 1 1/8 in

Dozie Kanu

Detail: Headboard (a tribe sleep)

2022
Steel, oil, c-type print, found wood, nails and shoelace
90 x 151 x 8 cm
35 3/8 x 59 1/2 x 3 1/8 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Dozie Kanu, 2022
Galerie Francesca Pia, Zürich

Dozie Kanu

Headboard (Love Crime)

2022
Found mahogany head board, found chrome plated steel, inkjet prints, artist frames and epoxy sculpting clay
136 × 58 × 7 cm
54 x 23 x 2 3/4 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Blood Type, 2022
Performance Space, New York

Dozie Kanu

AB (Blood Type)

2021
Leather, cushion, steel, acrylic paint and spray paint
44.5 x 36.8 x 36.8 cm
17 1/2 x 14 1/2 x 14 1/2 in
(DKA030)

Dozie Kanu

negative (Blood Type)

2021
Steel and spray paint
57.1 x 38.1 x 43.5 cm
22 1/2 x 15 x 17 1/8 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
to prop and ignore, 2021
Manual Arts, Los Angeles

Dozie Kanu

Headboard (Abject Twin)

2021
Found head board frame, found lighting panel, steel and alligator skin
181.6 x 107.3 x 29.2 cm
71 1/2 x 42 1/4 x 11 1/2 in

Dozie Kanu

Slessor 2.0

2021
Hand carved marble, found burner, stainless steel and electrics
107.3 x 181.6 x 29.2 cm
42 1/4 x 71 1/2 x 11 1/2 in

Dozie Kanu

Detail: raspberry data chamber worthy with chest (type seat)

2020
Raspberry pi, video, steel wire, found toddler chair frame and found iron torso armour
61 × 31 × 36 cm
24 x 12 1/2 x 14 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
value order [gentrify.pt], 2021
Madragoa, Lisbon

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Owe Deed, One Deep, 2020
Project Native Informant, London

Dozie Kanu

merrill-y

2020
Stainless steel, found retail clothing hanger, steel, found mannequin torso, found rams head and chrome powder-coating
75.5 x 72.5 x 125 cm
29 3/4 x 28 1/2 x 49 1/4 in

Dozie Kanu

Detail: St. Jaded Extinguish

2020
Powder coated steel
144.5 x 53 x 70.5 cm
56 7/8 x 20 7/8 x 27 3/4 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Owe Deed, One Deep, 2020
Project Native Informant, London

Dozie Kanu

Bhad (Their Newborn’s Crib)

2019
Powder coated steel and anti-climb raptor spikes
114 × 58 × 99 cm
44 3/4 x 22 3/4 x 39 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
Transformer: A Rebirth of Wonder, 2019
180 Strand, London

Dozie Kanu

Allow Suffering to Speak (Pendulum)

2019
Found copper pipe, stainless steel, found ploughing-tractor disc blade, concrete, pigment and paint
146.05 x 53.34 x 92.71 cm
57 1/2 x 21 x 36 1/2 in

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
ARS JUS PAX, 2019
JTG Detroit Project, Woods Cathedral, Detroit

Installation View

Dozie Kanu
ARS JUS PAX, 2019
JTG Detroit Project, Woods Cathedral, Detroit

Dozie Kanu

Bench on 84s

2017
Poured concrete and steel
52.1 x 264.2 x 45.7 cm
20 1/2 x 104 1/8 x 18 in

Group Shows

Dozie Kanu, Joseph Yaeger

Frieze LA 2022

Frieze LA, Los Angeles

Dozie Kanu

Black Atlantic

Public Art Fund, New York

Dozie Kanu, Juliana Huxtable, Sophia Al-Maria

Transformer: A Rebirth of Wonder

180 The Strand, London

Dozie Kanu

Enzo Mari

Triennale Milano, Milan

Dozie Kanu

Crack Up – Crack Down

Ujazdowski Castle Centre for Contemporary Art, Warsaw

Dozie Kanu

Conversation Pieces

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco

Dozie Kanu

Recoil

International Waters, New York

Clémentine Bruno, Dozie Kanu, Joseph Yaeger

Art Basel Miami Beach 2020

Art Basel, Miami Beach

Dozie Kanu, Precious Okoyomon

Can't See

Sequences Biennial, Reykjavík

Dozie Kanu

HOI KÖLN PART 1: WELCOMING THE SPACE

Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne

DIS, Dozie Kanu

Art Basel Miami Beach 2023

Art Basel, Miami Beach

Morag Keil, Dozie Kanu

HOI KÖLN TEIL 2: IM BAUCH DER MASCHINE

Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne

Units 1 and 3
48 Three Colts Lane
London E2 6GQ
United Kingdom

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