Smithsonian Collections

The Preacher III

Image for The Preacher III
Data Source
National Museum of African Art
Label Text
Kosrof speaks of his recent works as investigations into a new alphabet, one which cleverly employs a vocabulary of signs and symbols to link past with present, and Africa with the diaspora in which he works and lives. Drawing upon traditional Ethiopian graphic systems, liturgical symbols, architectural forms, and pan-African motifs, Kosrof produces richly colored and detailed canvases. Deep reds and golds allude to Byzantine and Coptic histories while experiences of the diaspora are felt through affiliates with the syncopations of jazz.
Description
Large acrylic painting with deep red, pastel green and yellow palette, characterized by curvaceous forms of Amharic script, masks and architectural elements, some of which are executed in heavy black paints. The composition contains an energy and rhythm propagated by a layering of the scripted and sculpted forms. Wosene also suggests a subtle crucifix form with horizontal bands of iconography running across the upper portion and a central vertical strip extending downwards.
Exhibition History
Conversations: African and African American Artworks in Dialogue - From the Collections of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art and Camille O. and William H. Cosby, Jr., National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, November 7, 2014-January 24, 2016
African Art and The Shape of Time, University of Michigan Museum of Art, Ann Arbor, August 18, 2012-February 3, 2013
Inscribing Meaning: Writing and Graphic Systems in African Art, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, May 9- August 26, 2007; Fowler Museum at University of California, Los Angeles, October 14, 2007-February 17, 2008
Ethiopian Passages: Dialogues in the Diaspora, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., May 3-December 7, 2003
Published References
Harney, Elizabeth. 2003. Ethiopian Passages: Contemporary Art from the Diaspora. London: Philip Wilson; Washington, D.C.: National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, pp. 84-85, no. pl. 22.
Kreamer, Christine, Mary Nooter Roberts, Elizabeth Harney and Allyson Purpura. 2007. Inscribing Meaning: Writing and Graphic Systems in African Art. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution; Milan: 5 Continents Editions, pp. 88, 105, no. 7.18.
Kreamer, Christine, Mary Nooter Roberts, Elizabeth Harney and Allyson Purpura. 2007. "Inscribing Meaning: Writing and Graphic Systems in African Art." African Arts 40 (3), p. 87, no. 23.
Kreamer, Christine Mullen and Adrienne L. Childs (eds). 2014. Conversations: African and African American Artworks in Dialogue from the Collections of the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art and Camille O. and William H. Cosby, Jr. Washington, D.C.: National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution, pp. 225-227, 243, no. 107, pl. 137, back cover.
Meier, Prita and Raymond Silverman. 2012. African Art and the Shape of Time. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Museum of Art Books, pp. 64-65, no. 17.
Maker
Wosene Kosrof, born 1950, Ethiopia
Date
2000
Credit Line
Purchased with funds provided by the Annie Laurie Aitken Endowment
Medium
Acrylic on canvas
Dimensions
H x W x D: 111.6 x 92.1 x 3.2 cm (43 15/16 x 36 1/4 x 1 1/4 in.)
Type
Painting
See more items in
National Museum of African Art Collection
Object number
2001-1-1
Geography
Ethiopia
Restrictions & Rights
© 2000 Wosene