“My art is about infusing the tangible with the indivisible”.
Kofi Allen In His Own Words
First and foremost I am a Dreamer.
I seek to make visible the invisible and the seemingly impossible. My process encompasses attention to the layers of a story or a vision that bond together to express the fullness of the story.
I endeavour to capture the various unseen dimensions of a single thought, moment or vision and I try to present the facets of a differing perspectives.
My medium is the camera which I use to explore and reveal the texture, curvatures and narrative of the subject that has become entangled and engrained in the film.
An important aspect of my process and an additional element of my craft is the juxtapositioning of analogue film with digital film and organic materials. By using the various compononts I create further distortion and capture dimensions that submerge into the images hidden concepts, motifs and textures.
I describe my art as Icon-a-Graphic and central to my work is a consistent theme of nature, spirituality, the human spirit and its struggle for visibility and meaning. Another recurring theme has been the alternative cultural perspective of the people of the African Diaspora and their voice in a future context.
More About Kofi Allen
As one of the founding fathers of the Afrofuturism aesthetic movement, Allen has been consistent in his theme of exploring the African Diaspora in a future context and is inspired by the what is unspoken, unexpected and unexpressed.
Allen’s photography can be divided into three distinct categories all of which communicate his unique, powerful and resonating perspective:
The fine art photography which embraces elements of surrealism, pop art, photorealism, and hyperrealism has been included in many exhibitions, including The Last Supper Series as part of the Hayward Gallery’s permanent collection.
The conceptual photography and art direction have been embraced commercially by fashion and lifestyle brands such as Nike, Guiness, Oxfam, Levi's, Sergio Toshino, Couvoisier, Frank Usher, Sony Music Group, Assetts Japan, Universal Records, Pepe Jeans, V&A. His work can be found in magazines such as The British Journal of Photography, Trace, Time Out, Marie Claire, The Face, ID Magazine, The Telegraph. Sunday Times, Un-Told Magazine and NME.
The portraiture work which is highly in demand by performance artists encompasses the layers of styles found in his fine art work and the commercial work resulting in portraits outside the realms of the expected.
Allen’s work has exhibited globally including installations at the National Portrait Gallery, Hayward Gallery, Royal Academy Of Art, Studio Museum Harlem, Neue Gallery Austria, Szombatheley Art Gallery, Ecco Hommo Rotterdam, ICA Gallery, Roots & Wings Gallery Martinique.
- 2016 – Lacey Gallery
- 2015 – United Nations HQ New York | Ebola Arts Commission
- 2015 – The Mall Gallery, London | What’s The Point Exhibition
- 2015 – Brighton Library Expo| Iconic Verse
- 2014 – Ozwald Boateng & Kamba Fine Arts, London | Metropolis Series
- 2014 – Christies Auctioneers, London | Multiplied Show
- 2014 – The Mall Gallery, London | Tribal Art
- 2012 – Roots & Wings International Exhibition | Martinique, Barbados
- 2012-2014 -The Museum of London | African Caribbean Heritage
- 2012 – Hoxton Gallery, London|Bad Exhibition
- 2011 – Smoke House Gallery, London | InFame
- 2010 – Chepstow Gallery, London |Our World in a Frame
- 2010 – Autograph ABP, London |Last Supper Series
- 2009 – Brand Africa Gallery, London | Private Auction, Mio Dino
- 2007 – Mulberry House, London | Community Masterplan
- 2007 – National Portrait Gallery, London | Devotional
- 2006 – Stephen Lawrence Gallery, London| Look Both Ways
- 2005 – Haywards Gallery Permanent Art Collection, London | The Last Supper Series 1 & 2
- 2004 – MOMA, Oxford | The Veil Touring Exhibition
- 2004 – Royal Acadamy of Art, London | FIFA 100 World Tour Exhibition
- 1999 – Brixton Art Gallery, London| The Dark Room
- 1999 – Kurnsthal, Rotterdam | Ecco Hommo
- 1998 – The Crown Studio Museum, Harlem, NYNY, USA | Transforming
- 1997 – Accra, Ghana | Ghana Panfest Celebrations
- 1996 – 198 Gallery, London | Collaborative Show
- 1996 – Neue Gallery, Austria | The 90’s Family of Man Radical Images
- 1995 – Royal College of Art, London | Make Believe
- 1995 – Bonnington Gallery, Nottingham | Revelations
- 1995 – ICA Gallery, London | Mirage Enigma of Race