Elias Sime is a multi-disciplinary artist working primarily in relief sculpture and architecture. For more than twenty-five years, he has made collages and sculptural assemblages from found objects such as thread, plastic, animal skins, horn, fabric and bottle tops, alongside organic materials and binding agents. Many of the objects come from Mercato, the Addis Ababa open-air market, in particular the market’s Menalesh Tera section where trash is repurposed in resourceful ways. Sime’s work achieves effects from dense narrative to austere modernist abstraction. The artist resists the collagist’s shorthand of using discarded objects as traces or poetic stand-ins for human feelings or individual lives, favoring instead the idea of what writer Quinn Latimer has called ‘the feverish fusion of a multivalent society’. The artist looks past the emotional weighting of new versus old, finding renewal everywhere. The Santa Monica Museum of Art held a retrospective of his work in 2009.