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Press Release

Mitchell-Innes & Nash will present a solo exhibition of new paintings by contemporary artist Kojo Griffin from March 10 through April 24, 2004. Kojo Griffin: Now and Then will include seven paintings, several related works on paper and a sculptural installation, all of which will be on public view for the first time. Mitchell-Innes & Nash is Kojo Griffin’s exclusive representative. This is Griffin’s second solo show at the gallery. Griffin's psychologically charged paintings feature a cast of personified animal characters superimposed on a colorful graphic background. The paintings capture moments of ambiguity: though the characters themselves seem endearing, the scenes often carry a darker undertone. It is this combination of playful innocence with dangerous foreboding that reveals Griffin’s signature style. The paintings in this exhibition continue Griffin’s investigation into the precariousness of human existence, but also demonstrate a development of the temporal narrative. For the first time, Griffin represents two distinct scenes in a single work rather than presenting an isolated moment in time. Though the paintings depict sequential actions, time lapses between the scenes are implied, so that an uncertainty exists with respect to both timing and details. The formal composition of each panel corresponds to the time frame of the narrative – the present is always fully rendered, while scenes depicting the past and future are more vaguely portrayed. Speaking about this series, Griffin has likened the segmented compositions to short film or video clips, adding that “the viewer is meant to finish the story, drawing on his or her own experience to complete the narrative.” This body of work exhibits a range of influences from Japanese woodblock prints and classic African and European fairy tales to Saturday morning cartoons, video games and Japanese manga animation. Griffin has been featured in several important U.S. exhibitions including Splat, Boom, Pow: The Influence of Cartoons in Contemporary Art, 1970-2000,at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston and the ICA Boston in 2003, and traveling to the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio in January, 2004; the 2002 Corcoran Biennial at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C; the Freestyle exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem and the Santa Monica Museum of Art in 2001; and the 2000 Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. Griffin has also received international exposure, recently exhibiting at MW Projects, London, and Grimm & Rosenfeld Gallery, Munich, as well in museums and galleries in Milan and Stockholm. Mitchell-Innes & Nash is located at 1018 Madison Avenue, between 78th and 79th Streets in New York. An opening reception will take place at the gallery on Wednesday, March 10 from 6 to 8 pm. Gallery hours are 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Tuesdays through Saturdays. For more information or to request images, the media can call Stacy Bolton Communications: Tel: (212) 721-5350 Fax: (212) 721-0780 Email: or