ASNI (owned by Konjit who used to run the Asni gallery in Farensay) has
now moved to Arat kilo (English church area) a little bit before Ras Amba
hotel coming from Arat Kilo. It has a sign in English and Amharic on the
black metal gate.
TALISMAN GALLERY (Contemporary Art Gallery owned by the artist Massimo de
Vita) is located in the Old Airport area close to St Gabriel church, next
to save the children. At the old airport roundabout coming from Sarbet
you take the exit towards the church (not towards the Golf course, which
would be the second exit coming from Sarbet/Pushkin square, but the next
one, the third) and you drive straight, when you get to the Mulmul bakery
on your left, you turn left and it will be the first street on your left.
It is in the ground floor of the Salvatore de Vita complex, which also one
of the nicer apartment and office complexes in Addis.
cell: +251 91 150 79 69
office: +251 11 372 48 91
ATELIER fine art gallery is located Mexico (just below the roundabout,
behind the Showroom bar and restaurant, there is also a WV garage there –
on the road that goes from Mexico roundabout to Sarbet/Pushkin roundabout)
+251 911 124 360
ECAG – Ethiopian contemporary Art Gallery is located on the Ring road,
between the Gerji roundabout and the exit for Bole Medhane Alem. As far as
I can tell this is the priciest one of them all.
Map and contact info available on the website.
Other places where I have seen interesting contemporary art:
Makush Art Gallery and restaurant – on Bole road,Mega Building, the right
hand side of the road if going towards airport)
Another gallery/art shop (I don’t know the name) – next to the US AID
building in the Bole Olympia area (where the road goes from Kazanchis
towards bole Olympia) – there is a building that contains several
interesting shops including KDesign (scarves, etc), Gigi (Persian
furniture) and this art gallery with some nice contemporary local art.
The What’s out Addis monthly publication lists over 30 galleries with
phone numbers but no address (you can get the publication at Lime tree in
Bole among other places).
It wasn’t love on first sight, but already the second day I really started to enjoy this city. It simply has so much to offer when it comes to culture (music, coffee houses, partying,…)
I visited two museums: The IES which I liked a lot, including the Lime Tree Bar and the university grounds and the National Museum (with Lucy). I found both equally interesting, maybe good to do one on your first day and one on the last day. Most people prefer the IES.
Tess was our driver from Lalibela back to Addis. He was the first and basically only Ethiopian with whom I had the feeling of having a real contact. He’s open minded, used to tourists, very chilled and generous. He’s not waiting for a tip, gives money himself to beggars and was very honest with us. He works for the Diversity Tour company and very likely will be able to help you out with several questions (and not necessarily expecting to be paid for every detail, opposite to some others in the business).
– Tour of the local artists (real artists, not the ones who just copy). Mr Yitbarek: He’s working as a guide in the national museum, an older man. He also did some of the organization of the modern art section museum. He proposed me to have a tour at some artist ateliers, but suggested I should visit Asni Gallery first to find out which artist I preferred. I talked to him a long time and had a very good feeling about him, but too bad no extra day. Yitbarek, 0911759045 and firstname.lastname@example.org
Asni moved from its original location to a place not far from the French Embassy, the road is called “Eritrea road”. However, it is true that Konjit’s Asni gallery does not exist anymore. However a number of artists opened up an artist’s house in the building Asni had moved to. At the moment the artists have an exhibition around the topic “leather” which can be visited.
Another place where art lovers can enjoy contemporary art by Ethiopian artists is Lela Gallery. Lela is found in Old Airport not far from Residence of the Chinese Embassy. There are signs leading to the gallery. The gallery also offers the opportunity to meet artists while having drinks or food as it could also be described as an arts-cafe. Definitely a “must have seen” place! For more information you may call the owner Lily Sahle +251.911.300756
since i am very interested in contemporary arts i was keen on visiting the asni gallery in addis.
my taxi driver spent a lot of research and investigating until we finally arrived at the gates of the park surrounding the building. i was happy to have finally arrived.
my happiness turned into frustration when a non-english-speaking girl guided me from the park-gate to the building which was in a state of decay, uninhabited, empty: she even led me through the (very beautiful) building: empty rooms, traces of what seemed to have been pictures/hangings, nobody nowhere. it was an eerie experience, some of the rooms where completely black – had the house burned? had the walls been deliberately blackened?
in the garden i saw sculptures, but again there was nobody.
neither the girl nor a woman we later on accosted spoke english but whenever i asked “asni gallery?” i got “yellem” as an answer. they understood what i wanted and they gave me whatever information they had: the gallery did not exist any more.
of course i wanted to make sure if i had been led to a kind of fake asni-gallery, but, no, “this asni” they confirmed. and then “yellem”.
on my way home i checked if my taxi driver had taken any wrong turns etc., but, no, the itinerary had been right.
there was no asni gallery.
elisabeth from austria
We come back from a one month trip to Ethiopia, and your guide was a big help, thank you! We wanted to let you know, however, about art galleries in Addis Abeba: we went to “Asni gallery”, which is a very pleasant place (nice park, peaceful place…) but is no longer a gallery, but rather a residence for artists: we met two of them there, who explained us they spent one month residence there, and two others would be there the next months, etc. In terms of art gallery, we think you could rather mention the Makush Art Gallery, on Bole Road, in Mega Building, held by Naty Yohannes (email@example.com): this gallery represents about 40 young artists (painters, mainly) coming from the Fine Arts School of Addis Abeba, and we could find there a representative tendancy of the contemporary art in Addis… This address was given to us by the very nice and helpful woman we met at the office of tourist information on Meskel square. We think this gallery is worth being mentionned in your excellent guide, this is an update information for your next edition…
Françoise Dubor & Bruno Declercq
Originally submitted 2009/01/18