By Ogova Ondego
Published February 22, 2015
An anthropologist, curator and writer from Ethiopia is expected to deliver a public lecture on ‘Contemporary Art and Anthropology’ in India on February 23, 2015.
The speaker, Meskerem Assegued, is introduced in the programme of the lecture to be delivered at 6.00 PM at Dr Bhau Daji Lad Mumbai City Museum in Mumbai as “a well-known curator of African contemporary art with a focus on environment.”
“Meskerem Assegued,” says Tasneem Zakaria Mehta, Managing Trustee & Honorary Director of the museum, “will discuss her work in anthropology, as well as the major exhibitions she has curated in Ethiopia and in the other parts of Africa and the world. In this lecture presentation, Ms Assegued discusses her ongoing projects, including the founding of the Zoma Contemporary Art Center (ZCAC) and its artistically sculpted center at Harla, Ethiopia. She makes a case for sharing knowledge through artistic endeavours and open discussion as necessary tools to mitigate the adverse human impact on the environment. Ms Assegued’s practice reiterates the importance of understanding history and the ability of art to bring the past into the present so that it can help the future. Further, she delves into the history of ancient sculpture and architecture of India and draws parallels to her work.”
Assegued is an anthropologist, curator, and writer who, in 2002, founded Zoma Contemporary Art Center (ZCAC), an artist residency located in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, and Harla, a small village south of Dire Dawa of the Horn of Africa country.
Meskerem Assegued has over the past 16 years curated exhibitions both in Ethiopia and abroad. They include Giziawi #1, an art happening in Addis Ababa (2002); Devine Light by David Hammons at ZCAC (2003); Green Flame with Elias Sime, Ernesto Novelo, and Julie Mehretu; and the co-curated Eye of the Needle, Eye of the Heart by Elias Sime with Peter Sellars (2009). She was a member of the selection committee for the 2004 Dak’Art Biennale and the 2007 Venice Biennale African Pavilion, and is currently doing research for an upcoming exhibition at the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Germany.