- Collection ID:
Boyadjian, Torkom, 1920-1987
1964 - 1971
- Physical Description:
3 photographic prints
8 x 10 inches.
25.5 x 21.5 inches.
This collection contains one framed map of Abyssinia circa 1784, measuring 25.5 x 21.5 inches, by cartographer and engraver Emanuel Bowen, and three 8 x 10 inch photographs depicting Ethiopian artist Afewerk Tekle (1971), Patriarch 'Abuna Tewoflos (1964) and Emperor Haile Selassie I (1967) respectively. Each photograph bears the signature of its subject. The photograph of 'Abuna Tewoflos was taken by Selassie's court photographer, Torkam "Tony" Boyadjian. Selassie's portrait is an official presentation photograph, with a green leather frame adorned with the emperor's coat of arms in gold, signed and dated by Selassie.
Haile Selassie (1892-1975) was Emperor of Ethiopia from 1930-1974. Born Tafari Makonnen, he succeeded Empress Zauditu to the throne in 1930 and took the name Haile Selassie to mark his imperial status. During his reign, he sought to modernize his country, although he was criticized in his later years for failing to address Ethiopia's chronic poverty and for his poor handling of the Wollo famine in the early 1970s. His internationalist views led to Ethiopia becoming a charter member of the United Nations, while Addis Ababa was established as the center for the Organization of African Unity (now the African Union). In 1974 a military coup by Mengistu Haile Mariam deposed Selassie. He was kept under house arrest until his death in 1975. The Rastafari movement reveres Haile Selassie as a messianic figure.
'Abune Téwoflos (1909-1977) was the second Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church. His tenure as Patriarch was marked by attempts at bringing reforms to the Church, including modern educational methods in the theological schools and the establishment of ecumenical ties to other Orthodox Churches. When Emperor Haile Selassie was deposed in 1974, the Church lost its official standing as state church in the new Derg regime. Abune Téwoflos was arrested in 1976 and executed a year later.
Afewerk Tekle (b. 1932) is an Ethiopian artist who is well-known for his paintings on Christian and African themes, as well as his murals and stained glass. Afewerk originally trained as a mining engineer in England but his artistic talent was soon apparent and he enrolled in the Central School of Arts and Crafts in London. He then went on to become the first African student to enter the Slade School of Art, where he studied painting, sculpture and architecture. Afewerk's numerous international exhibitions include shows in Russia, Germany, Bulgaria, the United States and Turkey. In addition, his painting "Self-portrait" was the first work by an African artist to enter the permanent collection of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
Title provided by EEPA staff.
Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access note
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Conditions Governing Use note
Permission to reproduce images from the Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives must be obtained in advance. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Preferred Citation note
Joseph and Patricia Brumit Collection, Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Custodial History note
Custodial History note
Donated by Joseph and Patricia Brumit, 2004.
Eliot Elisofon Photographic Archives, National Museum of African Art
National Museum of African Art
P.O. Box 37012
Washington, DC 20013-7012