About & Press


Artist’s bio

  • 1976-80   followed the Fine Arts School of Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 1980-82   taught painting, Fine Arts School (now the School of Arts and Design, Addis Ababa University), (et)
  • 1982-89   Higher Institute of Fine Arts, (Nikolai Pavlovich Art Academy), Diploma equiv. to M.A., Sofia, (bg)
  • 1992-95   National Higher Institute for Fine Arts, post graduate degree, Diploma equiv. to M.A., Antwerp, (be)
  • 1992-95    lecturer, Fine Arts School, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 1992-95    lectured at Alliance Française, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 1995-96    prepared & participated in workshops, University of La Laguna, Tenerife, (es)
  • 1997-98    guest lecturer, at Higher Institute for Fine Arts, Antwerp, (be)
  •   1999       led workshop and gave lectures at the School of Fine Arts (now Addis Ababa University), (et)
  •   2001       lectured at the Hasselt Visual Arts Academy; gast-docent, painting, (be)
  •   2002       lectured on ‘African Photography, Masquerade: the Photo Salons of African Popular Photography’, at Maastricht Visual Arts Academy, ESHPh symposium, Maastricht, (nl)
  •   2002       lectured on, ‘African Photography, Masquerade: the Photo Saloons of African Popular Photography’ at the Goethe German Cultural Institute, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, (et)
  •   2002      lectured on ‘African Modern/Contemporary Art’, at Alliance Française, Addis, (et)
  •   2004      lectured on African Photography, ‘Courteous Confines, African Contemporary Photography: the pull between ornament and figure’, at Moderna Museet, ESHPh Symposium, Stockholm, (se)
  • 2004     worked as exhibition organiser at Elzenveld Centre, Antwerp, (be)
  • 2009 – 2010  worked at Levanto as receptionist, Antwerp, (be)
  •   2012   worked on artists collective, “Fast Rewind”, with Netsa Art Village public, Addis, (et)
  •   2012   Open air exhibition, (face 2 face, Addis Ababa BOZAR), Lela Gallery, Addis, (et)
  •   2012   PhD. (Cum-Laude), La Laguna University, La Laguna, Tenerife.  Thesis theme: “Headways in the Art of Mimesis: Inquiry into the Contemporary Visual Arts Repertoire of East Africa” (es)
  • 1996 – 2014 Visiting lecturer at the Alle School of Art and Design, Addis Ababa University, (et)
  •   2014   Residencias Artistica por Intercambio y proyecto TRUEQUE, R.A.T., Mexico City, (mx)
  •   2016   Video talk “Imagine Europe: In Search of New Narratives”, BOZAR, Brussels, (be)
  •   2016   Intro – Ethiopian Cinema, “Dfret”, MDD Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens, Deurle, (be)
  •   2017  Volunteer at children art edu:  2012-17 Kunst Fabriek/Das Kunst, Ghent, (be)
  •   2017 – 2023 worked part time as public assistant at SMAK, Ghent, (be)
  •   2018  Panelist Mekelle University, ICES20: 20th International Conference of Ethiopian Studies, Mekelle (et)
  •   2020 Drawing project with Plantijn School students (done), part of Parkoers show at the school’s halls with 21 International artists, which is postponed, Borgerhout, Antwerpen (be)
  • 2020 Artist in Residence, Frans Masereel Centrum; a NICC and Ecole Mondiale project, Kasterlee, (be)
  • 2021 Participation, MUHKA forum (Museum of Contemporary Art Antwerp – webinar), (be)
  • 2021 Participation, artists discuss future prospects.., at a Kunstenpunt forum, Brussels, (be)
  • 2023 Lecture at Entoto Poly Technic College, Fine Arts Section, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 2023 Lecture at the Modern Art Museum, Gebre Kristos Desta Center, Addis Ababa, (et)

Individual shows

  • 1980   Alliance Ethio-Française, (with Yonas Kenea & Mezgebu Tessema), Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 1982   City Hall Gallery, the Municipality of Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 1989   Gallery Sredets’, Ministry of Culture, Sofia, (bg)
  • 1994   “Piquant Anecdotes”, Gallery Tragt, St. Niklaas, (be)
  • 1994   “Stolen Light” Beelden Gallery, Antwerpen. (Catalog), (be)
  • 1994   VUB Gallery, (Vrij Universiteit Brussels) Brussels (be)
  • 1996   “Open Hands”, St. Bernardus Cultural Center, Antwerpen, (be)
  • 1997   Alliance Française, Addis, (et)
  • 1999   Alliance Française, Addis, (et)
  • 2001   De Branderij, Antwerp, (et)
  • 2002   Art and Advice, Gallery, Hasselt (et)
  • 2003   “Back Bencher”, Alliance Ethio-Française, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 2005   Anka Humma, Brussels, (be)
  • 2005   St. Joris Pand, Antwerp, (be)
  • 2006   Gallery 23, assisted by Felix de Rooy, Frank Händler and Diana Elshout, Amsterdam, (nl)
  • 2006   Leoplodburg Cultural Centre, Leopoldburg, (be)
  • 2007   Delen Bank, (Antwerpen) with A&A gallery Hasselt, (be)
  • 2008   Domelhoff Cultural Center, Neerpelt, (be)
  • 2010   “X Factor”, Addis Ababa, Laphto Centre, (et)
  • 2010   Zuiderpershuis, (with Worku Goshu), Antwerpen, (be)
  • 2011   “Beyond Axum”, Bekris Gallery, 49 Geary St., San Francisco, (with Etiye Dima Poulsen), (us)
  • 2012   “When Words Fail” Bekris Gallery, 49 Geary Street, Suite 235, San Francisco, (us)
  • 2012   Amandla, City Library (with 10 African and Belgian artists) Antwerp, (be)
  • 2012   ”Terra firma”, Ruimte Morguen, (with Ermias Kifleyesus), Antwerp, (be)
  • 2012   Gallery 24, (with Etiye Dimma Poulsen, Amsterdam, (nl)
  • 2014   Alliance Ethio-Française, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 2014   Alliance Ethio-Française, Dire Dawa, (et)
  • 2014   ”Start to Jazz”, Kunstenplatform WARP, Sint Niklaas, (be)
  • 2016   ”BAD”, Belgium Art and Design, solo booth, Eskimo Fabriek, Gent, (be)
  • 2016   ”Inside Track” Lela Art Gallery, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 2016   “Wereldfeest Ondersteboven”, Domelhoff Cultural Center, Neerpelt, (be)
  • 2018  ”Polémica Personal”, Agencia de Tránsitos Culturales Santa Cruz de Tenerife, (es)
  • 2018  ”Frivolous Marks”, Lela Art Gallery, Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 2023  ”The Spectrum: A Solo Exhibition by Mulugeta Tafesse”, Et. Metro, (Curator, Mifta Zeleke) Addis Ababa, (et)
  • 2023  ”Mr. Kiss: A Solo Exhibition by Mulugeta Tafesse”, The Modern Art Museum: Gebre Kristos Desta Center, (Curator, Mifta Zeleke) Addis Ababa (et)

Group shows

  • 1989  ”Small Format Paintings’”, the Union of Bulgarian Artists, Sliven (bg), (catalog)
  • 1989   Mejdunaroden Plein Air, Young Artists’ exhibition, Shirokaleka, Smolian (bl), (catalog)
  • 1995   “De Sokkel Van David Teniers”, Elzenfield Cultural Centre, Antwerp, (be)
  • 1996   “AEthiopia: People, Culture and Art”, African Museum of Tervuren, Brussels (be), (catalog)
  • 1997   “African Wind”, De Vierkante Zaal, (with Toma Luntumbue, Aimé Ntakiyicka, … ), (be)
  • 1999   “Faith, Hope, and Love” Millennium – De Warande, Turnhout, Marie-Jo Lafontaine, Ricardo Brey, Zhou Shanglie, Stef Van Bellingen (curator), (be) (catalog)
  • 1999   “Print as Fiction”, with Guillaume Bijl, Ronny De Meyer, Bernd Lohaus, Martin Maloney, Werner Mannaers, Ulrich Meister, Luc Tuymans, Philippe Vandenberg, Henk Visch (be), Gallery Roger Van Daele (limited edition), Antwerp, (be)
  • 2001   “Dessins Choisir” Addis Ababa, Paris, with international artists (catalog), (fr)
  • 2001   “Nestled Time”, De Branderij, Antwerp, (be)
  • 2001   Dialogist-Kantor & Walter Swennen /Jour-fixe: Ethiopië-rapport, Lieve Lambrecht en Chris Straetling, Ria Paquee, Tewodros Hagos, Nebiat Abebe, Dimension Group (…) Factor 44, Antwerp, (be)
  • 2002   Dakar Biennale, (catalog), (sn)
  • 2003   “23 sins” – Artists book’  Triennale, Vilnius, catalog), (lt)
  • 2003   Arte Coppo, Vervier, Liege with A. Peron, (be)
  • 2003   “Yemereshaw Qeeld” Text performance; with Guy Rombouts, Mirabelle Wouters, Daisy Wouters, Arjen Nelis, Harry Heirmans, Chris Straetling, Factor 44, Antwerp, (be)
  • 2004  ”Lime Light, A Painter’s epi-c-tome: Unprepared Grounds”, Book Presentation, Stef van Bellingen; Video, Chris Straetling; Factor 44, Antwerp, (be)
  • 2004  ”Montigny-Dakart”, Montigny Charlerois, (be)
  • 2004  ”Eclipse”, Bornem/Puurs/Willebroek CC, (catalog), Stef Van Bellingen (Curator), (be)
  • 2005  Ethiopian Cultural Event, Lyonne, Mikael Bethe Selassie, Tewodros Tsige, (…), (fr)
  • 2005  Amandla, City Library (African and Belgian artists) Antwerp, (be)
  • 2006  Amandla, City Library (20 African and Belgian artists) Antwerp, (be)
  • 2008  ”Ecouter et Entendre”, Hassan Musa, Otobong Nkanga, Aimé Ntakiyicka, (…), Dunja Hersac (Curator), Gallery Kevin Conru, Grand Sablon, Brussels, (catalog), (be)
  • 2008  ”Art Reflecting The World”, Clingendael, Netherlands Institute of International Relations, Antonio Claudio Carvahlo, Joseph Beuys, Ronny Delrue, Hadasah Emmerisch, (…) Stef Van Bellingen (Curator), (nl)
  • 2009  Amandla, City Library (African and Belgian artists) Antwerp, (be)
  • 2009 East African Biennial, a project on (unmasking) les Demoiselles des Avignon, Ricardo Brey, Pierre Mertens, Willo Gonnissen, Yves Goscinny (curator) Dar Es Salam, (Catalogue), (tz)
  • 2009  ‘Sport: Fait(es) Divers’, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Sim cha Chi, Axel, Harold E.Edgerton, Hans Peter Feldmann, Jef Geys, Guy Mees, Edward Muybridge, Hans Op de Beeck, August Sander, Walter Swennen, Henk Visch, Phil Wauters (…) Mechelen, Marc Scheppers (Curator), (be)
  • 2010  BOLERO, an international art project on the move, Addis Ababa, Laphto Centre – Leo Kosm (curator) (Et); Dar Es Salam, Alliance Française (Tz); Karoo Gallery, Prince Albert (SA); Zero Station, a house for creativity, Nguyen Nhu Huy (curator), (ve), (….) www.artbolero.be
  • 2010  Amandla (…) Atlas, Antwerpen (be)
  • 2010  “Kunsten Route-Euro Park”, Renaat Braem, Sim Cha Chi, … Marc Schepers (curator), (be)
  • 2010  “Impetus”, Atelier Fine Arts Gallery, Tewodros Hagos, Eyob Kitaba, Behailu Bezabih, Tamrat Gezahegne, Klaus Martens, (Dawit Petros, Aida Muluneh /Addis Fotofest), Mexico Sq., Addis, (et)
  • 2011  “Neo Escape”, Atelier Gallery, Michael Tsegaye, Claus Martens, Antonio Fironte, Ezra Wube, Addis (…), (et)
  • 2012  Bolero, an international art project on the move, 1, Shanthiroad, Shanthinagar, Bangalore (Ind); Galerie VOSS, Gerberstrasse, Dortmund (de), Galerie RIVELLI 798, 798 Artzone, Jiuxianqiao no. 2, Chaoyang Dst, Beijing (ch) , www.artbolero.be
  • 2012 Manifesta 9 Parallel Events, Genk Public Library, with ArtBolero group, Genk, (be)  www.paralleleventsm9.eu/events?page=3
  • 2012  a BOZAR initiated Africa touring exhibitions, conceived by David Adjaye, Leo Lefort (curator), (et) www.bozar.be/activity_world.php?id=12596
  • 2012  Lela Art Gallery, Addis Ababa, Leo Lefort (curator), Addis (et.) www.lelagallery.com/Past  files/FACE2FACE.pdf
  • 2013  “Celebrating Pan Africanism through Artistic Expression”, Ethiopian Studies, Addis Ababa University, commemorating 50th anniversary of African Union, Dr. Desta Meghoo (curator), Addis, (et) www.uneca.org/media-centre/stories/celebrating-panafricanism-through-artistic-expression#.UjMwVuC-KZY
  • 2013  Leaving for a living, expo, A & A Gallery, Stevoort Hasselt, (be) www.leaving.be
  • 2014  Second Room, Antwerp Central Station, windows, Antwerpen, (be)
  • 2014  Open Studios, 2nd edition, Studio Start and NICC, Deurne (be) www.studiostart.be/resident artists-Mulugeta-Tafesse (be)
  • 2016  BAD Belgium Art and Design Fair, 1st edition, Gent, (be) www.belgiumartanddesign.be (be)
  • 2016  “Imagine Europe: In Search of New Narratives”, BOZAR” , video interview, Brussels, (be)
  • 2016  Gallery Resonance, Plovdiv, (bg)
  • 2017  Open door day, NICC/Studio Start, Antwerpen, (be)
  • 2017  BOLERO, KIOSK, Place des Augustins, Geneva, (ch)
  • 2017  BOLERO, EOS Gallery, 38 Cheiden, Victoria, Square, Athens, (gr)
  • 2018  “Funny, How Art Makes You Wander”, with Johan Tahon, Karin Hanssen, Waldrada ONzea (Curator), Ina Leys, Nel Bonte, Inge De Smedt, Morbee Gallery, Knokke, (be)
  • 2019  “FOMA”, group show, Genk (be)
  • 2020 “des – works on paper”, 1 Jun-31 Jul 2020, Agencia Transitos Culturales, Tenerife, (es), https://en.agencia-tc.org/
  • 2020 – 2021 Bolero Art Group 10th anniversary, in different locations, Edith Doove (curator), (fr), https://bureaudoove.com/2020/07/11/bolero-an-international-art-project-on-the-move/
  • 2022 WARP – Contemporary Art Platform, Vier Maal Vier – 16 Jaar, (Curator, Stef Van Bellingen), St. Niklaas, (be)
  • 2022 Unsettled, Duendo Art Projects, Zwartzussenstraat 25, Antwerp, (Curator, Bruno Claessen), (be)
  • 2022 Bolero Art Group, 2 opening events, Kyiv, Kassel (off-Documenta 15), (Curators, Anna Laganovska, Jürgen Olbrich, Alexandra Tryanova), (de), (ua)
  • 2022 EX(P)ODUS, Hofke Van Chantraine, Oude – Turnhout, (be)
  • 2023 “Strange Fruit”, Group Show with eight artists, FAAR Hert Straat 5,  (Curator Wouter Van de Loot), Antwerp (be)
  • 2023  ”Beyond FAAR”, Group Show with 65 artists, FAAR Hert Straat 5, Antwerp (be)


Art reflecting

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Sport: Fait(es) Divers





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