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Born and raised in Ethiopia, Wosene Kosrof immigrated to America and studied art. A casual glance at his work may recall European or American abstract painting, but look again and it's clear his intricately constructed compositions are essentially African -- and especially Ethiopian -- in origin. In fact, he uses Ethiopia's Amharic alphabet as the basis of his colorful, stream-of-consciousness canvases, paintings that hint at modern European masters such as Henri Matisse and Paul Klee even as they evoke a stroll through the maze -- like corridors of a crowded casbah, a North African market with no end of exotic sights and sounds. In that sense, Wosene (as he prefers to be known) takes us full circle, back to the Africa from which modernists such as Matisse drew their inspiration in the first place. — D. Eric Bookhardt

Through Sept. 30

Stella Jones Gallery, Place St. Charles, 201 St. Charles Ave., Suite 132, 568-9050

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