Prophet and Loss (Lalibela, Ethiopia)
June-July 2005, oil on linen, 22”h x 18”w.
A solitary figure surveys Ethiopia’s highlands near the urban center of Lalibela. Ethiopia’s emperors adopted Christianity beginning in the 4th century and in the 12th century a series of astonishing churches were carved out of the landscape’s living rock. Residents of the region remain powerfully connected to their proud history, faith, and cultural heritage and yet vulnerable to the vicissitudes of drought that have ravaged their livelihood as farmers repeatedly in recent memory--obliging them to be dependent upon U.S. food aid.