Betelhem Makonnen_________ቤተልሄም መኮንን                                                         

A native of Ethiopia, Betelhem Makonnen is an artist living in Austin, TX, with a MFA from the School of Art Institute of Chi­cago and a BA in History and Literature of Africa/African Diaspora from UT Austin. Her work in photography, video, installation and writing is shown nationally and internationally– including Women & Their Work, The Contemporary Austin, The Philbrook Museum of Art, Big Medium, Le Musée des Abattoirs, and The Carver Museum, with performances and screenings at The Blanton Museum, IVAHM, and Casa Daros. Her work has been featured in a variety of publications including Artforum, NYT, Frieze, Hyperallergic, Zoetrope, O Menelick 2º Ato, Revista Lampejo, and Glasstire. In addition to her practice she co-organizes Addis Video Art Festival, a platform for video art in Ethiopia, and is a co-founder member of the Austin-based arts collective Black Mountain Project.

A continual blending of anthropological, philosophic, and historical – personal and collective – poetic inquiries provides the platform for the development of the conceptual foundation of my practice. My works translate perception, presence, and place within a trans-temporal and trans-spacial topology that operates on the relational dynamics of my African diasporic consciousness.

With unfixed and many-ed points of departure, I use (re)search, (re)configurations, and (re)combinations and to make works that take form in the in-between spaces existing in paradoxes, feedback loops and sites of connection. I want my works to contribute towards an unlearning that brings othered planes of perception into view.


Photo by Moyo Oyelola

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