Ethiopia is a land of diversity and contrasts, of great environmental and cultural variety, of opposites that magically interact in a kaleidoscope of faces, landscapes, sounds and colors. The extraordinary peoples who occupy it, their culture and traditions, the desert, the Danakil depression, the savannah, the great rivers, the lakes, the snow-covered summits of the highest peaks, and the characteristic ambas are the tesserae of a beautiful mosaic that still lives today, in balance between modernity and tradition.

A melting pot, of people with diverse languages, economic activities, physical characteristics, hairstyles, and habits. And the religious scenario is no less varied, including the three great monotheistic religions alongside which traditional animist customs and rituals persist.
This incredible richness has attracted, over the centuries, a large number of travelers and explorers who, driven by curiosity, the thirst for knowledge, the taste for adventure, traveled across the length and breadth of this country providing diaries, reports, maps, sketches, portraits and photos of their journeys.
Hanry Salt, Theophile Lefebvre, James Bruce and the Italians Vittorio Bottego, Gustavo Bianchi, Antonio Cecchi are just few of the many European travelers that contributed, between the 19th and 20th centuries, to reveal to Europe the extraordinary beauty of this country, moving from the remote southern lakes region to the northernmost highlands spires, from the burning Afar depression at east, to the western wet and greenish forests.

It is leafing through the pages of their reports and admiring the extraordinary images enriching them that has matured the idea of an exhibition that, following the footsteps of some of these explorers, will guide the visitor to the discovery of this extraordinary country.

The exhibition, organized by CaLuMa, in the persons of Carlo and Marcella Franchini, the University of Naples “L’Orientale”, in the persons of Andrea Manzo and Luisa Sernicola, aims to tell of those places, seen and described by past explorers, through maps, sketches, excerpts from diaries, ethnographic objects and ancient and rare books, but mostly with numerous enlargements of photographs taken by Carlo Franchini, enthusiastic traveler and amateur photographer who has had the good fortune to be born and live for many years in those lands and to continue to visit them repeatedly.

The exhibition will be enriched by the prestigious collection of ethnographic items and zoological finds of the Natural History Museum of Verona. The images and descriptions of Ethiopia presented in this exhibition are the result of the work of many travelers, scholars, artists, explorers, photographers and publishers of yesterday and today, and we are ready to guide you there, where the past mixes with the present, curiosity fuels the taste for adventure, beauty finds its perfect fulfillment in diversity.