Tightrope: Infatuation

Elias Sime, Ethiopian, born 1968



Reclaimed electronic components on panel

Overall: 91 1/2 × 142 1/2 in. (232.4 × 362 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased through the William S. Rubin Fund and the Evelyn A. and William B. Jaffe Fund

© Elias Sime. Courtesy James Cohan, New York.



Place Made: Ethiopia, Eastern Africa, Africa


21st century

Object Name


Research Area



Not on view


Working with castoff electronic motherboards, Elias Sime explores the modern city. Tightrope: Infatuation evokes an aerial view of a city—a network of roads, overlapping bridges, high-rise buildings, fallow areas, water courses, and green spaces. A studious experimentalist, Sime has explored a wide range of media, including used objects and salvaged materials. The city of Addis Ababa, where he lives and works, has long been an object of fascination for the artist, and is the focal point of the Tightrope series.

Although Sime envisions the city as a sprawling ecosystem of form and matter, he directs our attention to the more pressing ecological issues. This includes the effects of human footprints on the environment, in particular the e-waste dumps that constitute an environmental and health hazard in many cities of the world. Tightrope: Infatuation is simultaneously beautiful and disconcerting.

From the 2019 exhibition Global Contemporary: A Focus on Africa, curated by Ugochukwu-Smooth C. Nzewi, Curator of African Art

Course History

SART 27, SART 28, Printmaking I and II, Tricia Treacy, Fall 2020

Exhibition History

Global Contemporary: A Focus on Africa; Dorothy and Churchill Lathrop Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 26-December 8, 2019.

Publication History

John R. Stomberg, The Hood Now: Art and Inquiry at Dartmouth, Hanover, New Hampshire: Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, 2019, p. 216, ill. plate no. 147.


James Cohan Gallery, New York, New York; sold to present collection, 2016.

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