Robel Temesgen - Adbar

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Exhibition opening October 15 at 19:00
Also open October 17, 18, 24 and 25. 12:00 - 17:00

Adbar is an abstract Amharic term for the embodiment of a spirit connected to a specific community, it exists within nature – for example; Adbar can be embodied by a tree, a lake, a mountain or a rock. Adbar serves many communal purposes, most notably, as a place for prayer, as a meeting point for rituals and offerings, and as a place for resolving discrepancies.

I am investigating the influence of Adbar on the social interactions in shared/public spaces as a code of conduct for a relative community. Growing up in Dessie, located in the Northern part of Ethiopia, I observed, and to some extent took part in, such experiences: I witnessed the fading of such rituals and the subsequent development of 'new' rituals in step with contemporary times. Following on-sight research in several places, the project developed into a painting-sound-smell installation intended to communicate the incorporeality of the Adbar. This includes the new sound work HÁLDDIT by Ande Somby.

Robel Temesgen, b. 1987 in Ethiopia, received a BFA with great distinction in Painting from Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, in 2010. His artistic work focuses on society in the search for sustainability and the comprehension of sociological changes. Temesgen’s artistic mediums include conversation, performance, installation, painting and video. He has collaborated in projects with other artists, artist collectives, and communities. Engaged in the Ethiopian art scene; Temesgen has participated in exhibitions, workshops, residencies, festivals and conferences, both locally and internationally. He taught drawing, painting and composition at Alle School of Fine Arts and Design, Addis Abeba University from 2010-2013. Temesgen is currently undertaking his MFA at Tromsø Academy of Contemporary Art, University of Tromsø, Norway.