'T' Magazine Profile on SVA Alumnus Dozie Kanu
June 8, 2017
From The New York Times Style Magazine: “Dozie Kanu is waiting for his bench to arrive. ‘I think this piece is gonna mesh really well,’ he says, surveying the bright, second-floor gallery space it will soon occupy. ‘I’m just imagining the chrome glistening.’ The bench is on its way to the Lever House in New York, where it will be installed as part of ‘Midtown,’ a generation-bridging group show that places the work of legendary practitioners like Isamu Noguchi and Gaetano Pesce alongside nascent talents like Kanu. Open through this week, the show is a partnership between Salon 94 and Maccarone gallery.
For Kanu, a 24-year-old Houston transplant, ‘Midtown’ is a milestone that called for commemoration. ‘The bench was created after I took a step back and looked at the reality of what it meant for me to be participating in this exhibition alongside some of the most respected individuals in the art and design worlds,’ he says. ‘It’s also an expression of how I pushed myself to take steps farther and farther outside the box that I had the potential of being confined to.’ It’s a striking object, a slab of cement joined to gleaming car wheels by industrial piping. It’s also dense with autobiographical detail: The cement is dyed purple in reference to the promethazine cough syrup used to make lean, the narcotic cocktail popularized partly by Houston rappers, and the wheels are the classic elbow wire rims favored by the city’s custom car culture. Commingling hometown symbolism with a sleek modernism, it represents both where Kanu came from—and where he’s going.
Kanu left Houston for New York City in 2012 to attend the School of Visual Arts as a film student. His interest in object design grew out of an affinity for purposeful mise-en-scène…” (For the full story and more photos, click here)