Thursday, July 30, 2009

Update on Tribal Art at De Young Museum

The San Francisco Chronicle recently reported on the John Friede collection at the De Yound Museum in San Francisco. This is a major victory for the city of SF and the De Young Museum. The articles notes:

In a victory for the city-owned museum, Judge A. James Robertson II kept in place a temporary order preventing works from the collection from being seized or sold off to pay part of a $30 million debt that de Young trustee John Friede owes his brothers to settle the division of their mother's estate.

"What this means is the art remains safe for public access," said Deputy City Attorney Don Margolis, who is representing the de Young. "The court is maintaining the status quo so that there can be an orderly determination of the competing claims."

Friede and his wife, Marcia, have pledged almost their entire collection to the de Young, including about 400 pieces already at the museum and thousands more at the couple's home in Rye, N.Y. But Friede also put up the artwork as collateral to settle the dispute with his brothers over the estate of their mother, Evelyn A.J. Hall, who died in 2005 and was the sister of publishing tycoon Walter Annenberg. - John Coté

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Zemanek Tribal Art Auction Results

Zemanek held its tribal art auction last week in Würzburg, Germany. The auction had a disappointing turn out in terms of persons bidding and also the lots available for sale. The sale fared just slightly worse than their last auction in March 2009 - selling only 30% of all lots offered. The best pieces offered for sale were priced around €10,000 with none exceeding €13,000. The object shown below, lot 468 a Figurine of a titled lady, was the highest priced sale fetching a total of €13,000 - well below its low estimate of €18,000. With a sale price that much lower than a stated estimate, the object was most likely available for sale without a reserve price - a very rare occurence in the art world.

On a side note: in this most recent auction, the auction house offered a sale of 'Wunderkammer Naturalia' or objects such as rare skulls, bone fragments, fossilized eggs and such of interest to Natural History aficionados. The one below, lot 9, is the fossilized egg of a daroosaur. It is still available for sale for €400. There were some very interesting and strange pieces available and it is most certainly worth a look, if just for amusement.
Dori Rootenberg

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

New Acquisitions at Jacaranda Tribal

We just recently sent out a newsletter with information on our latest acquisitions from the Ginzberg Collection. In this latest post, we wanted to profile two of these pieces which are exceptionally fine.

This first is a Dan, Mano or Guere chair from Liberia. This chair was probably carved as a prestige object for the use of the chief. The chair comes from the Marc Ginzberg collection and was featured in the book African Forms. The chair has a striking patina.
The second is an exceptional shield is from the Nilotic people located in southern Sudan. The shields from this region are commonly made from giraffe, ox, hippopotamus or buffalo hide. This shield also includes a ball of feathers that is located on the end of the shield and is usually made of ostrich feathers with some of the owner’s hair intertwined, wooden frame and intricate leather handle. It is truely a wonderful piece and has been show in several museums including in the Neuberger Museum of Art between 2002 and 2004.
We have been so fortunate to work with such fine and rare pieces. I hope everyone will take a look at these new acquisitions at our website.

Dori Rootenberg