Addis Fine Art gallery is pleased to present Ankober, a solo exhibition of works by photographer, Michael Tsegaye (b.1975).
Shot in the Ethiopian highlands, Michael’s Ankober is a series of black and white photographs that portray the fog-enveloped town that was once Emperor Menelik’s capital. Even though Ankober now appears to be no more than a humble rural outpost, the dense fog and diffused light that enshrouds and obscures Michael’s subjects (lowly goats and donkeys, the ghostlike figures of villagers) seemingly raises them to a mythological and archetypal status. Through the haze (which conceals much of the setting) readily recognisable motifs of the Ethiopian highlands—swaying eucalyptus trees, a woman wearing an embroidered gabbi—peek through. Ankober is as much about the unseen as it is the seen, as competing shades of gray outline both the readily visible and the barely perceptible, resulting in a gradient that wistfully creates a sense of depth.
Michael Tsegaye has regularly worked for international publications such as Der Spiegel, Jeune Afrique, and enorm; as well as the press agencies Bloomberg and Reuters. As an artist, he focuses on social documentary and art photography. He has exhibited in various galleries in New York, Paris, Berlin, Madrid, Morocco, Canada, Amsterdam, Mali, Miami, and Sao Paulo. Michael’s work can be found in a number of international magazines and various catalogues including Snap Judgments: New Directions in African Photography, edited by Okwui Enwezor, and published by the International Centre for Photography in New York City in 2007.