Ethiopian-Israeli Artist Hirut Yosef’s “Mulu & the Beta Clan” Exhibit at Tsion in Harlem

June 27, 2016, 8:39 pm

Artwork by Hirut Yosef. (Courtesy of the artist)

Tadias Magazine
By Tadias Staff

Published: Monday, June 27th, 2016

New York (TADIAS) — When Ethiopian-Israeli artist Hirut Yosef returned to Ethiopia in 2002 the trip “sparked a new connection to my roots,” she says, describing her paintings currently on display at Tsion Cafe in Harlem (Opening reception is scheduled for Friday, July 3rd). “Inspired by my vivid childhood memories, I began exploring both traditional and modern Ethiopian culture,” Hirut shares. “That trip, the first of several, sharpened my memories and focused my attention on what would become the inspiration for my work – my mother and grandmother.”

Hirut left Ethiopia with her family at the age of five. “As the affairs of immigration and absorption filled our lives over the next several years, the memory of my African roots came only in flashes – games, songs, tastes, smells, and color,” says Hirut in her artist statement. “Growing up in Israel I found myself drawn to American hip-hop and soul, street art and fashion. As I entered school for fashion design, I needed to develop a creative identity – but where would I start?”

‘Afro Punk Mulu,’ by Hirut Yosef. (Courtesy of the artist)

‘Four Women,’ by Hirut Yosef. (Courtesy of the artist)

Hirut adds: “From Ethiopia to Israel, through immigration and absorption, my mother and grandmother continued the traditional crafts of fine embroidery and basket weaving using colorful threads. Those simple geometric patterns have become a strong graphic motif in my paintings. Combining these patterns with images of strong women create the series I call MULU and the BETA CLAN. Mulu is a female name in Amharic, meaning ‘whole’ and ‘perfection.’ Mulu is my alter ego; she represents the special women in my life. In my work, I seek to empower women and build a visual bridge between my native origins and contemporary art and culture, reflecting my connection to fashion, street art and graphics. In doing so, I created a language of my own, redefining a place where the vast influences of my life can coexist.”

Artwork by Hirut Yosef, Nanye and Tatey. (Courtesy of the artist)

Artwork by Hirut Yosef, 1984 and Mimi. (Courtesy of the artist)

Artwork by Hirut Yosef, ‘Fly.’ (Courtesy of the artist)

If You Go:
Friday, July 1st, 2016
Time: 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Tsion Cafe
763 St. Nicholas Ave
New York, NY 10031
Mulu and the Beta Clan Exhibit

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