Tsedaye Makonnen

3/29/2021
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visual artist

Tsedaye Makonnen is a multidisciplinary artist whose studio, curatorial and research-based practice threads together her identity as a daughter of Ethiopian immigrants, Black American woman, birthworker and a mother. Makonnen primarily focuses on migration and intersectional feminism; using light, shadow, reflection, embodiment, movement and collaboration as materials. Makonnen is the recipient of a Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship. She has performed at the Venice Biennale, Art Basel Miami, Art on the Vine (Martha's Vineyard), Chale Wote Street Art Festival (Ghana), El Museo del Barrio, Fendika Cultural Center (Ethiopia), Festival International d'Art Performance (Martinique), Queens Museum, the Smithsonian's, and more. In 2018 Makonnen studied sculpture with mentor El Anatsui at his studio in Nigeria. Her light monuments have been exhibited at the August Wilson Cultural Center, National Gallery of Art and UNTITLED Art Fair and is currently being acquired by the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art. She has been featured in the NYTimes, Vogue, BOMB, Hyperallergic, Artnet, Artsy, Forbes, and more. Her recent exhibitions are 1:54 Contemporary African Art Fair in London, Park Avenue Armory, National Museum of Women in the Arts, The Momentary and Art at a Time Likes This. In 2020, Makonnen curated a virtual group exhibition with Washington Project for the Arts titled Black Women as/and the Living Archive based on Alisha Wormsley’s film Children of Nan: Mothership and is currently working on publishing an exhibition book in 2021. This upcoming March, Makonnen will be showing with her gallery at Art Dubai. For the upcoming Fall semester she will be the Clark Art Institute’s inaugural Futures Fellow in Williamstown, Massachusetts. She is currently in four exhibitions across the U.S. and Europe and is represented by Addis Fine Art in London & Addis Ababa. She lives in DC with her 10 year old son.

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