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Where did you grow up?

I was born and raised in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

What brought you to Berlin?

I came to Berlin to join my German partner and start a life with her. Also, I liked many things about the city, it’s multicultural and artistically inspiring.

What challenges have you faced while navigating Berlin's art scene?

The competition to be noticed and survive as an artist is very high in Berlin. The first barrier I encountered, is the fact that most things operate in the German language. The second thing is that Berlin has a huge pool of artists, which makes it difficult to break into the mainstream. I also suspect there’s an issue with the Berlin art scene constantly limiting African artists to solely producing “African Art”.

What themes do you explore in your artwork?

I explore the freedom of thought in my art practice;

liberating myself from negativity and fear. I use it as a continuous healing process, as well as prayer and meditation for witnessing my existence and finding meaning in life. I practice art to find a better version of myself.

What does freedom mean to you?

Freedom means a continuous process of discovering ourselves in contrast with our surrounding environment and society. Art serves as a tool to help us uncover our inner freedom and help us to live to the fullest


Is there a message you would like to share with other emerging artists looking up to you?

Africa as a continent has a lot of inspiration as a means to create art; it’s rich with colours, forms, patterns, diversity, culture, spirituality, social interactions, conflicts and so on. Wherever you are living in the world, it’s important to stand strong on your ground and beliefs. Know you are you, and you are unique.  

Frozen Dialogues
Equilibrium, 2017
Orientation 34

"Art serves as a tool to help us uncover our inner freedom"

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