I have always longed to do something that brought together the vibrant and exotic elements of my native Ethiopia (the land of my father) and the ever changing and exciting world of the internet - something that was half a development initiative and part an entrepreneurial venture (or an adventure!) - powered by a dose of passion. Thus, the birth of The Next Canvas - an online art gallery that works with emerging Ethiopian artists and provides them with a platform through which they can bring their unique creativity to the world.

The love of art and culture breathes life and love into the relationship I have with my husband, Jason. After having seen many beautiful galleries and exhibitions together in the United States, Europe, Africa and Asia, we realized that there was very little in the way of Ethiopian artwork shown beyond Ethiopia’s borders. Like so much of Africa, the true style and sensibility of Ethiopian art and culture remains virtually unknown by most people who like us, are not “experts” or “critics” of art. From this awareness came the idea for The Next Canvas. We wanted to use the power of the internet and social media to shine a light on the beauty, the elegance and the incredible grace of Ethioart and the talents of so many young Ethiopians who have much to offer the art world.

Today, The Next Canvas works with 19 young and emerging Ethiopian painters  - introducing their work to the wider global market and enabling them to enjoy international exposure for their art; working towards creating Ethiopian contemporary art footprints in the international art scene. We work with Ethiopian artists to curate one-of-a-kind paintings that embody the heritage of this unique East African country. We celebrate the artists’ creativity, energy and their work’s power of visual engagement manifested on the canvas. We have tried to provide a bit of background on each of the artists as well as the land of Ethiopia on The Next Canvas website. 

Buying Ethiopian art supports Ethiopian artists directly, allowing them to continue with their creative process. We want to make Ethiopian contemporary art accessible to people who love art and who want a positive experience buying art. We hope that by visiting our site that you learn a little bit more about the beautiful people and culture of Ethiopia. Every piece of artwork on the website has a story behind it; one that is unique to the artist as well as to the canvas. We hope the story continues with you and those you love when you make our artwork part of your home and family.

Sofia Martin

Founder of The Next Canvas 



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The Next Canvas® hosts the online art gallery. The Next Canvas works towards becoming a crucial platform for highlighting new developments, discussions and events related to Ethiopian art; creating an online experience that is easy and welcoming to both art buyers and artists. 

All rights reserved. © 2015 The Next Canvas. All images in this site are protected by copyright law and are owned by their creators/artists or The Next Canvas. Please see Copyright Notice for details.