Art exhibition at German House
An emerging Canadian photographer, Salima Punjani, came up with twenty seven engaging body of work, most of them taken at Addis Ababa’s Merkato market. Objects and people in the market seem to be her preoccupation, and her vivacious picture of chaos at Menalesh Tera sparks this show.” I started focusing on photography as a primary medium when I first visited Merkato in Addis Ababa,” she wrote in a flyer describing her works. “Each object, person and process involved in the market is reflective of struggle, symbiosis and perseverance. I couldn’t stop taking photographs after being exposed to such aesthetically beautiful and meaningful interactions,” she says.
Though some of the works look a little too easy, most of Salima’s photographs are clean, cool and immensely appealing. The complete range of her activity is laid out in wonderful rooms of German House four-floor galleries, in an exhibition that will run from December 8th until January 20th 2012.
A series of semi-abstract paintings made using the technique of impressionism by the Addis-based artist Henok Getachew is also part of the exhibition. The colorful geometric abstractions of repetitive lines are made with oil and acrylic.
Henok says he started experimenting with art when he was seven years old. He recalled creating art pieces using found objects and keeping his brothers awake while sketching and painting the night away. After graduating from the Addis Ababa University School of Fine Arts in 2008, he helped to establish Netsa Art Village, a collective of artists dedicated to providing an open space for creative collaboration and discussion.
Henok has participated in numerous group exhibitions between 2008-2011 at variety cultural institutes in Addis Ababa, including the National Theatre Gallery, Alliance Franicaise and the Gothe-institue. His solo shows include Wolmo at Netsa Art Village and Ferekesa at the Addis Ababa Goethe Institute. Henok is currently running art workshops and therapy sessions with children alongside painting and producing video art at his studio.
The young female artist Nitsusew Terefe opted for a more introspective, meditative approach in a more minimalist form. She has presented 19 works, exploring rhythm, interval and volume through black and white, shadow and light.
Nitsuew was born in Assela, in southeastern Ethiopia. She displayed a strong towards art early in her life and completed her B.A in Art from Addis Ababa University School of Fine Arts and Design in 2009.
As she explains it, she is concerned about the violence and harassment that women face and how they internalize it. “I believe that every woman represents beauty, but my artwork is not only about beauty, it is about my interpretation of violence against women and the psychological and physical effects it has on women around the world,” she says. Not every of Nitsuew’s work is excellent and some isn’t any good at all but the exhibition traverses the crests and gullies of her career with passionate thoroughness.