Yared Nigussu grew up in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. He graduated in 2005 from the Addis Ababa University of Fine Arts and Design. He earned a degree in Art and Education, with a major in painting. He was then awarded a scholarship to France, where he studied art and French language. Yared’s career was established when he began exhibiting his work in France and Austria.
Fusing undisguised brushstrokes with mixed media, rendered in a bright, opulent palette, Yared’s paintings are provocative and convey a narrative much deeper than the mere appearance of the subject. Paint drippings and densely laden dashes of vivid colour, juxtaposed with contrasting imagery and hues, create a deeply sensorial experience for the viewer. Captivated by the layers in his portraits, one can almost hear the soft breath of the subject.
After moving to Canada in 2009, he was inspired by the energy, light and urban perspective of his new home city of Vancouver. Yared has won Canada’s National Art Battle live competition three years in a row from 2011 to 2014. He is also the recipient of the 2015 Sage Award of Social Acceptance and Great Excellence, and the 2015 Bikila Professional Excellence Award.
Yared launched his own gallery called the ART LAB in 2018, a creative hub to promote art and culture in Vancouver. Situated on Main Street between 48th and 49th Streets, the ART LAB is where he works his signature brand of magic on the canvas. The ART LAB is intended to create cohesion across Vancouver’s diverse and changing neighbourhoods. Intimacy and connection are core values.