Ethiopia at the Crossroads

December 03, 2023–March 03, 2024

Centre Street Building, Level 1

The Walters Art Museum presents an extraordinary exhibition celebrating the artistic traditions of Ethiopia from their origins to the present day. Ethiopia at the Crossroads will be the first major art exhibition in America to examine Ethiopian art in a global context.

Seated in the Horn of Africa between Europe and the Middle East, Ethiopia is an intersection of diverse climates, religions, and cultures. Ethiopia at the Crossroads examines Ethiopian art as representative of the nation’s notable history and demonstrates the enormous cultural significance of this often-overlooked African nation through the themes of cross-cultural exchange and the human role in the creation and movement of art objects. The Walters holds one of the most extensive collections of Ethiopian art outside of Ethiopia, making the museum uniquely suited for exploring this topic. The exhibition features more than 225 objects drawn from the Walters’ world-renowned collection of Ethiopian art and is augmented with loans from American, European, and Ethiopian lenders.

Visitors will see historical works of Ethiopian art including coins, painted icons, illuminated manuscripts, metalwork and carved wood crosses of various scales side by side with works by contemporary Ethiopian artists Wosene Worke Kosrof, Aida Muluneh, and Elias Sime.

An illustrated catalogue, edited by Christine Sciacca, Curator of European Art, 300-1400 CE, and published by the Walters, will accompany the exhibition, along with a robust schedule of programs.