Fetlework Tesfaye is a Newcastle-based painter and sculptor who trained in fine art at Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia. Tesfaye predominantly sculpts in clay and feels an affinity to this medium because its tactile processes unite the artist with the earth and speak of a sacred connection between human beings and the soil. She has exhibited internationally. In 2004 she held a position as artist in residence at Jomo Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya, and for some years was head of ceramics. Tesfaye has studied ceramics in Ethiopia, Japan and Newcastle. Her paintings are vibrant and rich in colour; they speak of her experiences and the many lives she has lived.
Fetlework Tesfaye has been appointed as artist in residence at Minsteracres, together with Ausama Khalil. They are taking the lead on a project which will allow them to showcase their considerable talents, and to help others who visit Minsteracres throughout the year to produce paintings, sculpture, sound installations and performance art for the exhibition.