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Ethiopian Painting: Wosene Worke Kosrof painter of My Ethiopia

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Published on Jul 3, 2010

My Ethiopia is the title of a painting by Wosene painted in 2001. My Ethiopia was first exhibited in 2001 at the Bomani Gallery, San Francisco during "The Color of Words" series show, and in 2003 at the National Museum of African Art, The Smithsonian Institution, Washington D.C. Wosene's My Ethiopia is about unity, culture, faith, identity of Ethiopia and the beauty and riches of Ethiopian alphabet. It captures and illuminates the mixed emotions of patriotism, with nostalgic color arrangement that makes the blood run and the heart thrill and beat faster. It is an uplifting and inspiring icon. If his work was song, if his work was poetry, all Ethiopians would have sung and read it out loud.

As with My Ethiopia, Wosene's other masterworks are lavishly illuminated venerations of Ethiopia. The Ethiopic script/Ethiopian alphabet played a major role as an aesthetic language, a picture and a useful means of communicating ideas. They are integrated with poetic, thought-provoking script and decorations, expressing many of the same interests of Wosene. Inscribing on his canvases the nation's virtues with colorful and monumental words and phrases; he invites all Ethiopians to join him in the celebration. For example, In A Beauty of Your Own, we can read Amharic words, along with a phrase, "All Ethiopians are proud of their country." His other painting, Berkeley III, again does not represent the city of Berkeley, instead of Ethiopian food, language, Wax and Gold tradition. The carefully chosen words and phrases, such as Country, Unity, Our Flag, and Love of Country, Identity, Our Pride, and Ethiopia are inscribed again and again throughout his works. Their mystifying grander evokes a deep feeling of importance and melancholy, and discloses to the viewer a new kind of visual sensation and emotional realm.

Esseye G Medhin

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