Betelhem Makonnen & Stephanie Concepcion Ramirez

the meaning wavers
Sat Nov 23, 2019 - Thu Jan 9, 2020

Betelhem Makonnen and Stephanie Concepcion Ramirez’s artistic research converges in the exhibition, the meaning wavers, which explores immigration, transnational identity and the impact of silence on our perception of history. Makonnen reconfigures images, accounts, and official documents from her own experiences to shift perspectives on how life stories are told and understood. Ramirez examines the gaps in her Salvadoran-American family and cultural history to create artworks that disrupt existing narratives of Central American migrants. Both artists use photo, video, and installation to create an exhibition tracing two journeys toward new perspectives on the untold.

Curated by Rachel Stuckey, Gallery Director at Women & Their Work.


About the Artists

Stephanie Concepcion Ramirez is a Salvadoran-American artist from Prince George’s County, Maryland. She received her BFA at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA and her MFA at The University of Texas at Austin. Ramirez currently works and lives in League City, Texas. Ramirez’ practice combines the language of photography with site-specific installations and text. Her work is based on notions of memory, personal and historical amnesia that trace the veins of the Central American diaspora.
A native of Ethiopia, Betelhem Makonnen currently lives in Austin, Texas. She received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; completed graduate coursework at the School of Visual Arts of Parque Lage, Rio de Janeiro; and holds a BA in History and Literature of the African Diaspora from The University of Texas at Austin. Working with video, photography and installations, Makonnen researches questions on perception, presence and place as they relate to her diasporic consciousness. Makonnen is also a curator at Fusebox Festival and co-founder of the Black Mountain Project art collaborative.


This project was supported, in part, by a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant.