THOUGHTFUL FATHER’S DAY GIFT IDEAS

THOUGHTFUL FATHER’S DAY GIFT IDEAS WITH JOMO TARIKU

We spent some time this month in conversation with Jomo Tariku, Ethiopian American industrial designer & artist specializing in African themed modern furniture. Jomo, featured in Architectural Digest and Elle Decor, runs his studio in Burke, Virginia. In this interview, Jomo shares moments from his childhood growing up in Ethiopia and memories with his beloved father. He also discusses thoughtful Father’s Day gift ideas that are shoppable on 54kibo.

Here is our conversation with Jomo.

Credit: Jomo Tariku

WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO START DESIGNING AND CREATING FURNITURE?

WHAT HAS BEEN ONE OF YOUR FONDEST FATHER’S DAY MEMORIES?

Jomo Tariku: We did not have the same type of Father's Day celebration growing up in Ethiopia so I don't necessarily have one I can directly point to. Even here (in the US) we are very simplistic about the whole tradition. We go to a local steak house every year for lunch and have some relaxed quality time.

Credit: Jomo Tariku’s mother and father.

DO YOU KNOW OF ANY FATHER’S DAY RITUALS AND TRADITIONS THAT HAVE EXISTED THROUGHOUT YOUR FAMILY LINEAGE?

Jomo Tariku: Not really. I grew up in Ethiopia during very difficult times for most families. Ethiopia was going through uprisings, red terror, famine and civil war. We were being bombarded constantly by messaging from the Eastern Bloc countries where anything Western was frowned upon and ridiculed or even chastised by local cadres. Most families with connections were planning on how to get their kids out of the country safely once done with highschool so as to avoid mandatory military service and that is what my father did. A week after my graduation I was in the US taking summer class in college. Didn't even attend my prom ... it was a luxury he was unwilling to take a risk on.

WHAT ARE A FEW THOUGHTFUL FATHER’S DAY GIFT IDEAS THAT YOU’D RECOMMEND?

Credit: The Nyala Chair by Jomo Tariku

Have you read our Father’s Day conversation with A-list Interior Designer Leyden Lewis?

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