He was a non-conformist in life and in his art. He caused an outrage at school by creating a collage in which he applied sand, grog and pebbles. And, again, in his final project, a mural based on Ato Temachu, a hero from Bitwoded Endalkachew Mekonnen’s famous book.
He was also defiant during the Mengistu Regime, which caused him to abandon his graphic design business in Addis Ababa and flee to Nairobi on foot. He survived in Mombassa doing commercial art.
Going to Germany was an answer to his dream of living as an artist, where he lived and worked from 1980 until 1997, and where, in Cologne, he met Doris, a schoolteacher, whom he married and with whom he had three children.
He returned to Addis Ababa and lived as a full time studio artist, where he exhibited often, and also exhibited abroad and in the touring exhibition, Continuity and Change: Three Generations of Ethiopian Artists.
In collaboration with the Goethe Institute in Addis, he engaged in creating discussions on art and was often seen on TV sharing his views.