Art in the Diaspora

Kojo Marfo’s “Crucible of Hope” Exhibits at Heydar Aliyev Centre

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The Heydar Aliyev Centre hosts the “Crucible of Hope” exhibition, showcasing over 20 vibrant art pieces by London-based Ghanaian artist Kojo Marfo. Influenced by traditional African Akan artefacts and sculptures from his childhood, Marfo’s work reflects a blend of cultures encountered during his travels.

Heydar Aliyev Centre

The upcoming exhibition at the Heydar Aliyev Centre promises a visual journey through Marfo’s childhood dreams, intricately woven with the realities of the contemporary world. Each piece encapsulates layers of meaning and emotion, further providing viewers with a profound exploration of the artist’s psyche.

Kojo Marfo, Crucible,
Kojo Marfo, Crucible, 2023, Acrylic on canvas, 74 3/8 x 65 3/4 in, 189 x 167 cm (KOJ099)

Growing up in Ghana, he encountered traditional Akan art and carvings, which sparked his interest in art and visual culture. These artefacts, encountered during his formative years, continue to serve as a crucial source of strength for Marfo. He actively references traditional Akan art to bring attention to social issues, including inequalities, religion, politics, and spiritualism.

Kojo Marfo, Dominion
Kojo Marfo, Dominion, 2023, Acrylic on canvas, 79 1/4 x 77 5/8 in, 201.2 x 197.2 cm, (KOJ112)

Having showcased his artwork in prominent cities such as Amsterdam, Barcelona, London, New York, Paris, and Tokyo, Marfo’s oeuvre serves as a societal mirror, sparking contemplation and inspiring deep thoughts. The exhibition highlights Marfo’s distinctive intelligence, sense of humour, and keen observation and invites visitors to delve into the artist’s reflections.


Derrick Chidumebi is a creative writer and growth marketer hailing from Lagos, Nigeria. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Chemistry from Olabisi Onabanjo University, Nigeria, and is the founder of The Eko Place, a media/marketing agency based in Lagos, Nigeria. Currently, he serves as a writer for Art News Africa.

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