Friday, December 30, 2011

Opening of Cazino Lounge and Gallery, featuring Aster Aweke

Icon Aster Aweke will be performing at Cazino Lounge and Gallery, Las Vegas, on the 4th of January. My modern arts will be exhibited to the Vegas art community for the first time. Aster Aweke and I will open the start of artistically renovated Cazino Lounge and Gallery that constitutes a lounge, an art gallery, a nightclub and a restaurant.

For the last few months I have been working on a project that has taken me to Chicago and Washington, DC, as well keeping me busy in Las Vegas.  I'm in the process of finishing the Cazino Lounge and Gallery. This project is more like an installation than a traditional painting--I have designed and painted this space to create a home for my paintings.  It's been an exciting idea to explore, learn and create.  More than working on a single painting, working on a project like this gives me an entirely new perspective on art in general.

The aesthetics of Cazino are artistically designed from inspirations of space science, Yin Yang symbol forms conjoining Ethiopian monumental art. The art essence intersects the form and color of the three. I boldly projected a new kind of art perspective in my new works. The art design at Cazino entertains 3-dimensional space. It also amuses art concepts of music and spirituality. Cazino created a new type of leisure place where people enjoy services that connect the culinary services with music and contemporary art gallery. Connecting Ethiopian music great Aster Aweke and my art works, Cazino will open the new model of lounge and gallery.

The Inner Voice: Upcoming solo exhibition by artist Eyob Mergia will be displayed on the 22nd of January.

Two Simultaneous Gallery Openings on January 20th, 6pm to January 24th
Theater 7 and Graficandus Art Studio
1406 South 3rd Street
Las Vegas, NV 89104

Happy New Year!

Saturday, September 10, 2011


Genesis, 29 x 8.5'

This large charcoal drawing (29 by 8.5 ft) was originally conceived as part of  my research and preparation for a  mosaic and tile project on spiritual art, but became one of my most important pieces.  The size and scope of this pieces can really only be fully appreciated in an exhibit setting, so I have tried to convey some of that in the accompanying photographs.

Genesis is a study of Light and Darkness, of the mystery of Creation, of Imagination and From, and the Human Soul.

-- Click to enlarge the images.--


In the Beginning was the Word and the word was with God and the word was God! John 1:1

The exhibit where these photographs were taken was featured in these two publications:

Eyob Mergia: An Ethiopian artist rising in America

Local Painter Showcases Ethiopian Culture and Artwork

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Las Vegas, The Boulevard at Night

The painting that I've been working on, The Boulevard at Night, is my first expression of my experience of Las Vegas. The ideas have been stirring in my head for some time, and finally I've started painting. I'm expressing the color, the night life, the mood of the city, the essence of the beauty. The reflections especially call out for oil paint, and watercolors, to be expressed graphically. There is very wide scope for the imagination.

6 X 6'  in four panels

My goal is to take these realities into the abstract form, carrying the audience with me into a new way of seeing the things around them. In visiting art galleries around Las Vegas, I have seen a lot of art (and some exceptional sculpture) and I'm looking forward to contributing my own abstract voice to the artistic expression of the city. All abstract art comes from the realistic world, and the degree of abstraction and the strength of expression comes from what is inside.

At the same time, we don't want to abstract so far that we lose touch with the real, because that is the only connection we have with the audience. The artist is responsible to carry the people along with him as he creates his experimental art, so they can see where he's going.  It's like you're bringing them aboard your boat and sailing with them to your world.  People need to be able to see themselves in your work. Realistic painting may represent one person's perspective, but abstract art has the capacity to communicate universally.

I'm going to be working with some galleries in California and Las Vegas throughout this year. I'm developing a project about the Boulevard into a large exhibit for later this year.  Keep watching the blog for more updates on this project.

Abstraction in Practice, article

In the Spring 2011 issue of Art of the Hills, John A. Day wrote a very insightful article entitled, Abstraction in Practice.

Art of the Hills cover
In this article, he offers the reader a brief discussion of the nature of abstract art, recognizing that, “abstract art exists on a continuum running from realistic through non-representational measured by degrees, and it is those degrees that merit discussion in issues of style, technique, and intent.”

He then follows the thread of those degrees through the art of various South Dakota artists. The section about my art featured The Cello Dream.  Click on the image below to read the article.

Art of the Hills article

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Inspiration is an Idea that comes in a flash

Buffalo with Snow, mixed media on canvas, 32" X 67", 2009, $4200

I’ve been living in Sioux Falls for many years now. That time has seen many changes in my art as I have learned and developed. One of the things I have learned during my time in Sioux Falls is how to focus my creativity and cultivate my inspiration. Sometimes it’s difficult to be inspired when a person sees the same things every day. We have to learn how to find inspiration in other places—books, and other works of art, music, and learning from many different aspects of life.

I’m very happy with the pieces of art that I have contributed to the community of Sioux Falls. These pieces are some that I feel are my most valuable contributions of artistic awareness to the city:

These are some of the best pieces of my career, and I am glad to have them represent me here. I’m looking forward to continue to grow as an artist, pursuing some exciting opportunities in this field.

Morning Melody, oil on canvas, 36" X 48", 2010, $4800I have accomplished what I needed to accomplish as an artist here, and I am grateful to this city for the time and opportunity to do that. I feel very supported and encouraged here.  For that reason, I’m thankful for the experiences I’ve had over the past years.

To me being an artist is to have a mission. When I go to a new place, a different country or culture, my mission is find and express, to celebrate the beauty of that place, to dig into its history. Art is one of the languages that humans use to communicate. It is also a conceptual way to see. My art has allowed me to look at things in different dimensions, in forms and cubes and mathematical expressions.

Mother and Child, oil on canvas, 31.5" X 39.5", 2007, $3800Artists have always taken their world and their experience and reinterpreted it, presented it back to their audience in a way that allows the audience to see that world in a new way, in a new light and a different form. Without art, the world is flat and boring—there is no beauty, no form, no inspiration.

Inspiration is an Idea that comes in a flash, and we grab that flash, take hold of that millisecond’s idea. We let the flash of that idea carry us along. It gives us wheels to run on, and it carries us and we carry it beyond and through other ideas and thoughts. They drive us from moment to moment, and help us explore the essence of life. We take the beauty out of the dust, and hold it up to the light.

Painting is not a pointless activity—it is a power that helps to refine the soul. Art is daily bread for the soul. However the artist should have a message to convey, a message, revealed to him by his inner voice, that is the source of the beauty in his work. Only that is beautiful.

Contact me if you are interested in any of the available paintings featured on this blog.