Robel Temesgen: Art Inspired by the Ethiopian Belief of Adbar

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous 2016! January starts with visiting the first of a number of shows featuring inspiring art by inspiring artists.

Robel Temesgen with his work entitled 'Adbar 2'
Robel Temesgen with his work entitled ‘Adbar 2’

Tiwani Contemporary now represents Ethiopian artist Robel Temesgen and hosts his first UK solo exhibition this month. The exhibition collates a series of work inspired by the Ethiopian belief of Adbar and its associated rituals. In Amharic, the term ‘adbar’ refers to the embodiment of protective spirits within various elements of the natural landscape, such as lakes, mountains, rocks or trees. Trees, represented highly in this show, are strictly protected and act as a link between people and the spirit world. They can serve as shelter, places of worship and meeting points around which to discuss community matters.

Temesgen received an MFA from Tromsø Academy of Contemporary Art, University of Tromsø, Norway in 2015, and a BFA with high distinction in Fine Art (Painting) from Addis Ababa University in 2010. He has profiled highly in the Ethiopian art scene, participating in exhibitions, workshops, residencies, festivals and conferences, both locally and internationally.

Speaking to Robel during the private viewing, I found his explanation and inspiration for producing this series of pieces as fascinating as the art itself. The show runs from January 7th to February 6th at Tiwani so if you are in London over the next month why not pop by?

On Friday 8 January, 7pm Robel Temesgen will be in conversation with Hans Ulrich Obrist at the Gallery. For further info please visit http://www.tiwani.co.uk/Home/Exhibitions

Advertisements

Mirrors & Echoes at Tiwani Contemporary

I’m back in London about to enjoy the annual Jazz Festival and a number of art exhibitions opening over the next few weeks. I recently attended Tiwani Contemporary’s exhibition Mirrors & Echoes. This was my first visit to the gallery since it’s opening and I was pleased to see this collaboration by the talented artists Mary Evans and Emeka Ogboh.

Dialogue between Evans and Ogboh started from a radio broadcast during Art Dubai 2013, in which Lagos based Ogboh and Evans discussed the changing landscape of the Nigerian megacity. Evans left the city as a child but recalls her childhood and Ogboh’s current observations of his hometown form an interesting portrait of an ever-changing city, crossing space and time.

Mirrors & Echoes starts where the radio conversation ended, and further investigates notions of memory in relation to place, taking as its particular focus the interface between sound and image. Comprising paper cut-outs, video, sound and sculptural elements, this multi-faceted collaborative work creates an imaginary space based on the artists’ recollections and current experiences of Lagos. The show runs until December 20th 2014. For further information on the show and gallery please visit the Tiwani Contemporary website.