Video Online-Presentation: Sacred Images of Ethiopia: The Collection of Ethiopian Icons in the Museum „Fünf Kontinente“ in Munich

Carolin Schäfer

16. May 2024,18:00 CET

The dissertation project focuses on the largest collection of Ethiopian icons in Europe and aims to produce both a museum catalogue and a comprehensive guide to this object category. The Ethiopian icons in Munich have never been catalogued in a comprehensive manner before and will thus offer an important reference for those interested in these objects. Furthermore, the collection of 94 icons, produced in all the Christian regions of historic Ethiopia and datable between the 15th century and modern times, provides a vast and varied enough corpus to allow for historical and regional categorisation. Finally, these icons demonstrate an abundance of intercultural and even transreligious influences, which are likely due to the Horn of Africa’s fortunate position for trade and the spread of ideas. 

Accordingly, this PhD project has two main objectives. The first is to build categories of icons based on their places and dates of production, as well as their styles and iconographies, in the end to be able to trace the development of Ethiopians icons as they occur in the Museum Fünf Kontinente and in further museums. Secondly, the project focusses on the intercultural influences, such as by Eastern Christian, Persian, Indian, Asian, Latin, and Islamic cultures, working on the Ethiopian icons and tries to identify their origins.

Registration by email.