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BIOGRAPHY

Born in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, 1948

After finishing the Art University of Addis Abeba (later in Frankfurt and Zurich), and several exhibitions in Addis Abeba I came to Europe in 1971 to be at the Mecca, the birth place of modern art. After almost 43 years, at the age 64, I am going back to Ehiopia. In the meantime I am married for 42 years to Christine and we have a son, Ezana. Now looking back as a young Ethiopian artist fresh from the Art Academy, filled with idealistic ideas, trying to find the roots of the old Europen masters like Picasso, Kandinsy, Matisse, Van Gogh, hitchhiking from Zürich to Frankfurt, from Paris to Amsterdam with little money, drinking in the same coffee house where Picasso and Skunder met their friends and colleagues, to see the galleries, the museums and narrow streets, this experience of the 70's was the ultimate memory and the same time it was the beginning of my artistic life in Europe. I was 21 years old.

Since then I went for Research Studies to the USA for a year, sponsored by the community of Zollikon and worked among others with Jeff Donaldson (Dean of Howard University) and African, American, South American etc. artists. I have made exhibitions in major European cities and in the USA. One of the exhibitions in Zurich was opened by the Mayor of Zurich, Dr. Thomas Wagner, in Paris by Jack Lang, then Cultural Minister of France, in London by Cherie Booth Blair, the British Prime Minister's wife and Catherine Lambert, one of the world famous curators, and my biography was written by Dr. A. Orlando, Art Consultant in Zurich. From an European Museum I was honoured 2009 with an Award for Artistic Merits. I have appeared in Ethiopian and European TV, and my work has been published in several books and catalogues. I was honoured the first prize, "The Leonardo Award for Painting" in 2013 by the Art Museum of Chianciano.

Girmay H. Hiwet
2011 Zürich  / 2013 Addis Abeba

Group Exhibitions

Artists of Zollikon 1979
Exhibition of the Canton of Zurich, Wallisellen 1980
Artists of Zollikon 1981
Artists of Zollikon 1982
Museum of Modern Art, Winterthur 1984
Exhibition of Foreign Artists, Zurich 1984
Exhibition of the GSMBA, "Helmhaus" Zurich, 1984
Exhibition of the Canton of Zurich, Uitikon-Waldegg 1985
Exposition of the Canton of Zurich, Illnau-Effretikon, 1986
Artists of Zollikon, 1987
Art Expo, Roswitha Benkert Gallery, 1985 - 1995
Ancien Musée des Automates, Paris. France 1992*
Ukrainian Institute of America, New York, USA 1993**
Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York, 1993
Sudden Exposure, Addis Ababa 1995
Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, 1995
Art Museum, Malmö, Sweden 1996
forumclaque, Baden Switzerland, 1996
NAC Gallery, Baden, 1996
Westbourne Gallery, London, 1999
St. George's Gallery, Addis Ababa, 1999
Permanent Exhibition, Asni Gallery, Addis Ababa 2001
Zürichsee-Maler, Männedorf (CH), October 2001
Westbourne Gallery, London 10/2003
4th Florence Biennale, Florence, Italy 12/2003
5th Florence Biennale, Florence, Italy 12/2005
Biennale Museo d'Arte Chianciano, Italy 2009
1st International Izmir Art Biennial, Izmir, Turkey, 2011

"Where Art is Created", Museum of Zollikon, 2011
Biennale Museo d'Arte Chianciano, Italy , 2013, Winner of the Leonardo Award for Painting, 1st Price

Gagliardi Gallery, London, 2014

* with Pharmaciens sans frontières
** with the Ethiopian Children Fund

Appearances on TV

Zürivision, Zurich, 1984, on the occasion of the Exhibition of Foreign Artist
TV5, Paris 1992, on the occasion of the exhibition in the Ancien Musée des Automates
Tele M1, Baden, Switzerland, on the occasion of the Exhibition in the forumclaque
Ethiopian TV, October 12, 2001
Ethiopian TV, February 2002, "Back to the Roots", 1st Exhibition in Addis Ababa after 30 years (Asni Gallery)
Leonardo/Sky TV, Florence 10/2003 on the occasion of the 4th Florence Biennale 

Individual Exhibitions

Exhibitions in Addis Ababa between 1969 and 1971
Gallery am Platz, Eglisau, Switzerland 1981 and 1989
Gallery Manfred Schüler Zurich, Milan, Paris, Rome, 1981/1982
Gallery am Ring, Cologne, Germany, 1992
Gallery Palette, Zurich, 1985
Community of Zollikon, 1985 and 1992
Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York, 1994
Siemens Gallery, Zurich, 1999
Asni Gallery, Addis Ababa, 2002

Gallery Villa Meier-Severini, Zollikon 2009

Public and Private Collections

Community of Zollikon 2 works 1981/1985
Canton of Zurich 5 works 1985/1989
Gallery am Platz, Eglisau 2 works 1980/1989
Siemens AG, Zurich 1 work, 1999
Switzerland, Europe, Ethiopia, Africa, USA

Publications

GSMBA-Documentation of Zurich artists 1988
"Hidden Reality" Three Contemporary Ethiopian Artists, 1989, Zurich
Catalogue "Seven Stories about Modern Art in Africa" Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, 1995
Revue Noire No. 24, 1997, Paris
"Monitor" Siemens, Zurich, 1999
Contemporary African Art, Thames&Hudson, 1999
Back to the Roots, Asni Gallery, Addis Ababa, 2002
The Identity of African Art in relation with European Aesthetics. Modern African Painting
by Mercedes Carmona; publ. by Dara Art Gallery, Karthoum, Sudan, 2002
Catalogue Biennale Internazionale dell'Arte Contemporanea, 4th Edition, 2003
Catalogue Biennale Internazionale dell'Arte Contemporanea, 5th Edition, 2005
Catalogue Biennale Museo d'Arte Chianciano, Italy, 2009
Catalogue 1. International Izmir Art Biennial, Izmir, Turkey, 2011

Catalogue Biennale Museo d'Arte Chianciano, Italy, 2013

Mobile Addis Abeba, Ethiopia: +251 922 541 456
Mobile in Switzerland: 078 658 89 12
e-mail: girmay.hiwet@swissonline.ch

 

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