A headshot of Ph.D. candidate Abel Tilahun.
Student

PhD

PhD candidate Abel Tilahun is an Ethiopian filmmaker and artist.

The PhD in Creativity Immersion was a life-altering experience. I gained immensely from the rich perspectives of faculty, invited guests and peers as they shared expertise and reflected on my research proposal. I am grateful for a new network of engaged scholars and practitioners, and the powerful momentum to move my research forward until we meet again.

Dissertation

"Imagine the Cosmos"

“Imagine the Cosmos” is an artistic documentary film about the power of images to shape our collective imagination of Outer Space. The audience follows Ethiopian artist-filmmaker Abel Tilahun as he explores the legacy of ancient Ethiopian understandings of Space, the importance of art within the 20th century Space Race, and the ongoing potential for art to expand our imagination of humanity’s place in the cosmos. The film includes a constellation of stories that weave together conversations with thought leaders, artists, and scientists, Abel Tilahun’s artworks and animations, images of the cosmos, and the Ethiopian landscape and society.

Committee

Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Harvard University

Lisa Messeri, PhD, Assistant Professor of Sociocultural Anthropology, Yale University

James Thomas, Director, Mills Institute for Advanced Study