Addis AbabaSilent Dialogues: Dawit Adnew & Seyoum Ayalew
Seyoum Ayalew (b. 1970) lives and works in Addis Ababa, and studied art formally at the Alle School of Fine Art and Design. Seyoum’s practice is influenced by the everyday reality of his present and memories of the past, and serve as a reflection of Ethiopian society. The interior spaces depicted in his paintings are nostalgically inspired by the tej bet, the honey-wine houses that populated the city during his childhood, and provided central gathering spaces for people of all social and economic classes. The figures are composed as if posed for a photograph, captured in moments of intimacy and togetherness in vibrant patterns and warm hues. Seyoum’s works have been exhibited in Ethiopia, Kenya, China, and New York.
Dawit Adnew (b. 1973) is also based in Addis Ababa and attended the Alle School. Occasionally working from images or models, Dawit’s process is highly experimental. His practice is informed by studies in masks and iconography, and his use of patterns and fabric emerges from his experience as a textile designer. Surrounded by blooming flowers and creeping foliage, the women depicted in his canvases seem to communicate wordlessly with one another, drawing the viewer into their silent dialogue. Dawit has been included in various exhibitions in Addis Ababa, Kenya, and Malta.
Courtesy of the artists and Addis Fine Art