Alexander Skunder Boghossian

b. 1937, Ethiopia
d. 2003

In 1954 Skunder won second prize at the Jubilee Anniversary Celebration of Ethiopia's Emperor Haile Selassie I. The next year he was awarded a scholarship to study in Europe and spent two years in London at St. Martin's School, Central School and the Slade School of Fine Art. He extended his sojourn in Europe another nine years as a student and teacher at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière in Paris. In 1966 Skunder returned to Ethiopia and taught at the School of Fine Arts in Addis Ababa until 1969. He moved to the United States in 1970 and taught at Howard University from 1972 to 2001. He is the first contemporary African artist to have work purchased by the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

He recently collaborated with Kebedech Tekleab on a commission entitled MuralNexus at the Embassy of Ethiopia in Washington, D.C.

Recommended web sites for further study
(not affiliated with the Smithsonian Institution)

On April 30, on the occasion of the opening of Ethiopian Passages: Dialogues in the Diaspora, curator Elizabeth Harney asked Skunder to comment on his work in relation to the exhibition's theme of relocation and diaspora.
Go to the Video Interview section.

Composition II

Composition II
Acrylic on paper
53 x 69 cm. (21 x 27 in.)
Collection of the artist

Time Cycle III

Time Cycle III
Embossed bark cloth
122 x 122 cm. (48 x 48 in.)
Lent by Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York

Jacob's Ladder

Jacob's Ladder
Mixed media on paper
66 x 59 cm. (26 x 20 in.)
Lent by Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York

The End of the Beginning

The End of the Beginning
Oil on canvas
122.5 x 170 cm. (48 x 67 in.)
National Museum of African Art, museum purchase, 91-18-2

Welcome | Migrancy and Placemaking | Peopling the Diaspora | Frontiers of Memory |
Fruits of Exile | Video Interviews

Mickaël Bethe-Selassié | Etiyé Dimma Poulsen | Aida Muluneh | Elisabeth Atnafu | Wosene Worke Kosrof | Skunder Boghossian | Achamyeleh Debela | Kebedech Tekleab | Julie Mehretu | Elizabeth Habte Wold

Back to: NMAfA past exhibits