Saturday, March 31, 2012

The Florence Loeb Collection at Sotheby's - April 5

Daughter of the celebrated and visionary gallery-owner Pierre Loeb, the Parisian dealer of the greatest modern artists of the inter-war period, including Picasso, Miró and Giacometti, Florence Loeb inherited her father’s passion for distant cultures and his gift for forging special affinities with the most fascinating artistic personalities of his generation. Sotheby's will be offering Loeb's important collection of art and manuscripts on April 5 in Paris.

In addition to the finest ensemble of books and drawings by Antonin Artaud and a portrait of Pierre Loeb by Alberto Giacometti, the lots will include a selection of beautiful works from Africa, Oceania and the Americas.

View the online catalogue.

Tapa cloth  -  Humboldt Bay, Papua New Guinea
Byeri head  -  Fang, Gabon
Seated figure  -  Baule, Côte d'Ivoire
Kachina figure  -  Hopi, Arizona
Club  -  Solomon Islands
Bone mask  -  Eskimo, Alaska

Information and images courtesy of Sotheby's

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Jade Masks of the Maya

The Pinacothèque in Paris is currently presenting Les Masques de Jade Mayas, an exhibition highlighting an astounding and highly important collection of jade mosaic masks which represent one of the most momentous archaeological discoveries in Mexico during the last decade. These exceptional masks, entirely restored by the most eminent specialists in Maya archaeology, represent the faces of deities. Created for the elite rulers of Maya cities, their primary purpose was to guarantee them their bearers eternal life after death.

Visit the exhibition's official website.

Information and images courtesy of Pinacothèque

Life in Miniature: Asante Goldweights and Sculpture

New York's Renee & Chaim Gross Foundation is currently presenting Life in Miniature: Asante Goldweights and Sculpture, which features a range of works from Chaim Gross's renowned collection of Asante goldweights from Ghana. The selection of items from the collection will emphasize the plethora of shapes the sculptures take, from purely geometric forms to representations of animals and human figures. Narrative scenes are also presented, which capture daily life on a miniature scale and illustrate the sayings and proverbs that governed village life, from the raising of children to the determination of court cases. The goldweights on view will be complemented by a selection of Asante sculptures, including a splendid royal drum with caryatid, a gold-handled sword and a magnificent wooden Sankofa bird; sculptures whose forms and meanings were frequently replicated in the tiny weights.

View the official website.

Information and images courtesy of the Renee & Chaim Gross Foundation

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Tribal Art Auction - Pierre Bergé & Associés, April 2

Pierre Bergé & Associés will present a sale of Oceanic, African, and Native American antiquities in Paris on April 2. A marvelous array of Pacific weaponry and ritual carving from the collection of Claude Meyer will be offered to the bidders alongside a range of fine African carvings and American Indian works spanning from the Pacific Northwest to the Woodlands.

View the online catalogue.

Avian grave post figures  -  Sakalava, Madagascar
Mask  -  British Columbia or Alaska
Halibut hook  -  Tlingit or Haida, British Columbia
Mask, apouema  -  Kanak, New Caledonia
Ceremonial headdress  -  Malaita, Vanuatu
Standing figure  -  Sakalava, Madagascar
Canoe prow  -  Maori, New Zealand

Information and images courtesy of Pierre Bergé & Associés

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Tribal Art Auction - Dorotheum, April 2

Vienna auction house Dorotheum will present a sale of fine tribal antiquities on April 2. Primarily highlighting masks and statuary from West and Central Africa, the lots will also include a range of Indonesian and Pacific works, as well as a handful of Eskimo stone sculptures.

View the official website.

Mask  -  Boa, D R Congo  -  Late nineteenth/early twentieth century
Feather currency roll  -  Santa Cruz Is., Solomon Islands
Head depicting a nobleman  -  Benin, Nigeria  -  Eighteenth or nineteenth century
Avian grave markers  -  Sakalava, Madagascar  -  Nineteenth or early twentieth century
Kifwebe mask  -  Songye, D R Congo
Bwami society mask  -  Lega, D R Congo
Cihongo mask  -  Chokwe, Southeastern Congo  -  Early twentieth century

Information and images courtesy of Dorotheum

Monday, March 26, 2012

Tribal Art Auction - Webb's, March 28

On Wednesday, March 28, Webb's of New Zealand will present a sale of several significant international collections of Maori taonga and artifacts from a range of Oceanic cultures. An historically important poutokomanawa (carved centre post) and two significant feather cloaks are included alongside a lifetime collection of Maori and Oceanic fish hooks, as well as early examples from the Webster collection, Maori weaponry, adornment and a quality selection of Melanesian, Polynesian and African tribal artworks.

View the offical website.

Poutokomanawa figure attributed to Anaha Te Rahui (1822–1913)  -  Maori, New Zealand

Feathered prestige cloak, kahu huruhuru  -  Maori, New Zealand  -  Late nineteenth century
Figural pendant, hei tiki  -  Maori, New Zealand  -  Eighteenth century
Ancestral figure, tekoteko  -  Maori, New Zealand
Trade axe with manaia finial, patiti  -  Maori, New Zealand  -  Mid-nineteenth century
Club with manaia finial, kotiate  -  Maori, New Zealand
Group of Oceanic fishing lures  -  Various cultures, nineteenth century

Information and images courtesy of Webb's

Friday, March 23, 2012

Children of the Plumed Serpent at LACMA

Recent scholarship demonstrates that a confederacy of city-states in southern Mexico, largely dominated by Nahua, Mixtec, and Zapotec nobility, successfully resisted both Aztec and Spanish subjugation. Children of the Plumed Serpent: The Legacy of Quetzalcoatl in Ancient Mexico explores the extraordinary wonders in fresco, codices, polychrome ceramics, gold, turquoise, shell, textiles, and other precious materials that were produced by these confederacies between AD 1200 and 1500, as their influence spread throughout Mesoamerica by means of vast networks of trade and exchange. A ruling class of nobles, or caciques, believing that Quetzalcoatl, the human incarnation of the Plumed Serpent, had founded their royal lineages, called themselves the "Children of the Plumed Serpent"; they resurrected themselves and continued to affect cultural development in Mesoamerica during a dramatic period of social transformation.  On view April 1–July 1, 2012.

View the LACMA website.

Pendant Depicting a Ruler in Ritual Regalia  -  Culture unknown  -  AD 1200–1521
Detail of the Codex Selden  -  Mexico  -  AD 1556–60

Images and text courtesy of Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Tribal Art Auction - Castor Hara, March 26

Auctioneers Castor Hara will present a sale of fine tribal art and artifacts at Drouot Richelieu in Paris on March 26. The nearly 400 lots on offer will feature a panoply of traditional objects from Africa, Asia, Australia, Oceania, and the Americas, including a particularly compelling range of Pre-Columbian antiquities.

Visit the official website.

Polychrome vase  -  Maya  -  600–900 A.D.
Tripod vessel  -  Maya  -  600–900 A.D.
Seated figure  -  Jama-Coaque, Ecuador  -  500 B.C.–500 A.D.
Zoomorphic gold pendant  -  Diquis-Chiriqui, Costa Rica  -  1000–1500 A.D.
Female figure  -  Chancay, Peru  -  1100–1400 A.D.

Images courtesy of Castor Hara

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The Colonial Album at the Pitt Rivers Museum

This exhibition shows how very ‘ordinary’ albums from the colonial period can provide a unique insight into the colonial experience. Colonial albums are common, owned by many families who were involved in colonial activities, such as administration, missions, engineering, medical work or teaching. They are now recognized as important historical documents, and yet they are rarely seen.

The albums exhibited were produced by Percy Coriat, Ernest Emley and William Freer Hill between 1905 and 1935, and relate to periods spent in Sudan, Kenya, and Nigeria respectively. All three use photography as a tool to communicate and record the relationships between different cultures within a colonial context.

Visit the exhibition's official website.

Pagan hunter (print enlargement)William Freer Hill  -  Nigeria, 1905–1915
Album  -  William Freer Hill  -  Nigeria, 1905–1915
Album  -  E. D. Emley  -  Kenya, 1914–1948
Album  -  Percy Coriat  -  Sudan, 1928–1931

Text and images courtesy of the Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford

Monday, March 19, 2012

Tribal Art Auction - Lempertz, March 31

Lempertz of Cologne will present a sale of fine tribal art in Brussels on March 31. Among the lots will be an admirable selection of beautiful works from Oceania and West and Central Africa, the highlight of which comes in the form of a New Ireland uli figure once owned by the German artist Otto Dix.

Uli figure  -  New Ireland
Caryatid stool  - Luba, DR Congo
Ancestor skull  -  Asmat, Papua New Guinea
Mask  -  Vuvi, Gabon
Ivory figurine  -  Lega, DR Congo
Zoomorphic bowl  -  Fiji              

Information and images courtesy of Lempertz