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Andrea Frohne, curator of a new exhibit at the Kennedy Art Museum in Athens, Ohio, describes various pieces from the new show. This exhibit, “Encounters Beyond Borders, Contemporary Artists from the Horn of Africa,” contains pieces from artists who have lived there or are living there. The exhibit will open Jan. 22. 

New exhibit in the Kennedy Museum features art from The Horn of Africa

Artists from The Horn of Africa come together in new exhibit at the Kennedy Museum of Art.

African artists used their heritage to highlight northeast Africa's complexities to the public in a collaborative exhibit.

“Encounters Beyond Borders: Contemporary Artists from the Horn of Africa” will be unveiled at the opening reception Friday at 5 p.m. The exhibit will be open from Jan. 22 to May 29.

The new art exhibit at the Kennedy Art Museum has been a work in progress since 2013, Andrea Frohne, curator of the exhibition, said.

Frohne, associate professor of African art history in the School of Interdisciplinary Arts and in the School of Art, has been working for years to bring together eight artists to contribute to the exhibit. All eight artists are originally from The Horn of Africa, a peninsula in northeast Africa, but are now living and creating art in either North America or Europe.

Before the opening reception, Frohne said she will lead a gallery walk at 4 p.m., to discuss the concepts behind the exhibition and explain the individual works.

“I think it’s going to be a great inter-disciplinary experience looking at paintings, sculpture, film and photography from a part of the world we don’t normally get to see or hear about,” Frohne said.

A news release from The Kennedy Museum of Art describes the artwork in the exhibition as a means for understanding transnational complexities of Diasporas, political unrest in the Horn and broader stories of migration.

“We have one of the artists coming and he will be setting up an exhibition himself that you can actually watch during the week,” Lori Spencer, administrative associate at The Kennedy Art Museum, said.

Two of the artists will be in attendance Friday for the unveiling: Mohamed Hamid of Columbus and Yegizaw Michael of Seattle.

Along with meeting the artists, those in attendance will get to experience music from The Horn of Africa.

Goitom Negash, originally from the country of Eritrea and a graduate assistant at Ohio University, and Dennis Moot, an international student from Ghana, will be DJing the reception. They will fill the gallery with contemporary music from countries in the exhibition.

“It’ll be a great public experience with a lot of people coming together to celebrate this opening,” Frohne said.

The non-formal reception is free and open to the public. Horderves, cheese and wine will be served.


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