Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Winter BRUNEAF 5

From January 22–25, 2015, the winter edition of BRUNEAF will once again fill the Sablon neighborhood with an array of tribal artworks, African as well as Oceanic, offered for sale by both local and foreign dealers. At least twenty-four participants have confirmed for the event, and each will bring a host of exquisite objects for collectors to discover.

For more information, visit

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Ni’n na L’nu - The Mi'Kmaq of Prince Edward Island

Prince Edward Island in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence in Eastern Canada has been home to the Mi’kmaq culture for some 12,000 years. The community, whose environment has undergone many changes over the last centuries, still lives there and retains profound respect for its ancestors and their values. Ni’n na L’nu, Les Mi’kmaq de l’île-du-Prince-Edouard (Ni’n na L’nu, The Mi’kmaq of Prince Edward Island), on view until January 18, 2015 at the Musée Canadien de l’Histoire in Gatineau, Quebec, provides an opportunity to explore the history, spirituality, social structures, and material culture of an indigenous population that has remained viscerally attached to both its land and its traditions. Designed to resemble wigwams, the traditional circular Indian dwellings, the museum’s galleries teem with artifacts, video presentations, interactive objects, and audio tracks that provide a total immersion in the Mi’kmaq universe.

Visit the exhibition's official website.

Image courtesy of the Musée Canadien de l’Histoire

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Visions Huichol

The Huichol of southwestern Mexico are an autochthonous community with strong religious beliefs long handed down from ancestral traditions. They are known for their sacred use of peyote, the hallucinogenic cactus that they believe makes it possible to commune with the gods. Their nierika, or “objects to see,” are among their most recognizable artistic traditions. These enigmatically themed and brightly colored “yarn paintings” relate to visions associated with dreams and mythology. Inspired by ancient ritual practices, these creations evolved during the twentieth century and became an art form sought after by collectors worldwide. With Visions Huichol, un Art Amérindien (Huichol Visions, an Amerindian Art), Marseille’s Musée d’Arts Africains, Océaniens, et Amérindiens presents the richness of this expressive and mystical art through works by established artists such as Benítez Sánchez and Ramón Medina. Anthropologist Michel Perrin, who spent a number of years living among the Huichol, has provided detailed information for the exhibition that enables the viewer to decipher the symbols in the works, follow the stories they tell, and, in so doing, discover a people and their history.

Visit the exhibition's official website.

Martin de la Cruz (Niuveme), 1989
José Benitez Sanchez, 1988

Images and information courtesy of the Musée d’Arts Africains, Océaniens, et Amérindiens, Marseille

Friday, December 26, 2014

Tribal Art Auction at Native

On January 24, Native of Brussels will hold a sale of African, Oceanic, and Arctic art from various European collections, including that of Madame Andrée- Laure Seret, which has never been shown before. Madame Seret, who was a Sablon antiques dealer, acquired most of these objects from her friend, artist Willy Mestach, in the 1960s and 1970s. Many of the objects in the collection reveal the influence that African art had on Western artists. Among these, a Sakassou region Baule statuette, two kifwebe masks that Mestach was especially fond of, and an abstract Lega figure will be among the highlights of the sale.

View the online catalogue.

Spirit maiden mask  -  Punu, Gabon

Power figure  -  Songye, D.R. Congo

Kifwebe mask  -  Songye, D.R. Congo

Power figure  -  Kongo, D.R. Congo

Images courtesy of Native Brussels

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Opening of the Musée des Confluences, Lyon

The Musée des Confluences in Lyon opened on December 20, 2014. The architecture of the building is radical—hovering somewhere between crystalline and cloudlike—and it will be home to holdings of more than two million objects representing fields as varied as paleontology, mineralogy, zoology, entomology, anthropology, Egyptology, and prehistory. The core of its current collection is that of the former Musée d’Histoire Naturelle augmented with donations of famous collector Émile Guimet, as well as with objects collected by missionaries and from the holdings of the Musée Colonial. It was further enriched over the years by the new institution’s active acquisitions policy. The permanent collection will present more than 3,000 works shown in four thematic sections: Origins: The Stories of the World; Species: The Fabric of Life; Societies: The Theater of Mankind; and Eternities: Visions of the Great Beyond. Two inaugural exhibitions will feature most of the Émile Guimet pieces in Les Trésors de Guimet (The Guimet Treasures) and objects derived from curiosity cabinets in Dans la Chambre des Merveilles (In the Chamber of Marvels), both on view from the museum’s opening until July 2015. An abundance of cultural events—lectures, concerts, and a variety of academic programs— are also planned.

Visit the museum's official website.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Ce Tant Curieux Musée du Monde

The extended closure of Tervuren’s Musée Royal de l’Afrique Centrale (MRAC) for renovation has motivated its staff to find new ways of presenting its various collections to the public. One of the most recent of these is a fascinating show at the Musée des Arts Contemporains in Hornu, Belgium, titled Ce Tant Curieux Musée du Monde (That Most Curious World Museum), which is a reflection on the nature and importance of the MRAC’s encyclopedic collections. Curator Laurent Busine has put together a group of varied African artifacts from the old museum (small drums, receptacles, masks, etc.) along with related European objects (plaster molds of Africans’ faces) and natural history specimens such as insects, giant termite mounds, and elephant hides. This assemblage is displayed alongside twentieth-century photographs, some anonymous and others by Dutch artist Rineke Dijkstra.

Visit the MAC website.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Ethiopian Crosses at Jacaranda Tribal

Jacaranda Tribal has just revealed a trio of beautiful Ethiopian crosses dating from the medieval period to around the beginning of the nineteenth century. These gorgeous ceremonial works represent some of eastern Africa's most iconic artistic heritage and one of the oldest Christian traditions in the world. Ethiopia was probably the second country after Armenia to embrace the Christian faith, and there is evidence that Christianity thrived in the country even in the first century AD. For most of Ethiopia's subsequent history, Orthodox Christianity has remained the state religion. Ethiopian crosses are coveted by collectors of medieval art, religious art and tribal art for their stunning beauty and fabulous variety of form.

For more details on these objects and many more, visit

Processional cross  -  14th–15th century

Hand cross  -  1780–1830

Hand cross  -  Ca. 1700

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

African Art Sale - Artcurial

Artcurial will present a sale of fine African art today in Paris. The collections of Liuba and Ernesto Wolf and Mr. & Mrs. Robert Hendrickx of Brussels will be offered, the highlights including a rare and beautiful Luba figural pipe and masks from the Guro and Baule.

View the online catalogue.

Images courtesy of Artcurial

Monday, December 8, 2014

Eskimo & Northwest Coast Art at Jacaranda Tribal

Jacaranda Tribal has just revealed a beautiful new assemblage of tribal art and artifacts from the Arctic and the Pacific Northwest. This new ensemble of objects, as charming as it is fascinating, comprises a range of Eskimo works from Alaska and Greenland – miniatures, dolls, ritual items, and hunting equipment – along with a pair of ceremonial items from British Columbia. The selections in the newest online exhibition are illustrated below. For more details on these fine offerings and many, many more, please visit

Bird mask - Nunivak Island, Alaska 
Hamat'sa headdress  -  Kwakiutl, British Columbia

Mask  -  Cup'ig, Alaska

Raven rattle  -  Bella Coola, British Columbia

Hunter's amulets  -  Eskimo, Alaska

Bag fastener in the form of a fish  -  Eskimo, Alaska

Hunter's amulet  -  Eskimo, Alaska

Figurine  -  Eskimo, Alaska

Eight dolls  -  Yup'ik, Alaska

Model kayak  -  Eskimo, Greenland

Model kayak  -  Eskimo, Alaska  -  Ca 1200–1300 CE 
Archer's wristguard  -  Eskimo, Alaska

Pipe  -  Eskimo, Siberia
Tom cod lure  -  Eskimo, North America

Pair of fishing lures  -  Eskimo, North America

Fishing kit  -  Eskimo, North America

Images ©James Worrell 2014

Tribal Art Sale - Origine

Origine Expert will present a sale of fine tribal art and artifacts today, December 8, at the Hotel Drouot in Paris. The lots will comprise a wide range of works from Africa, Australia, and the pre-Columbian Americas.

For more information, view the online catalogue.

Images courtesy of Origine Expert

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thema Sablon 4

Thema Sablon began its fourth installment in the Sablon arts district of Brussels yesterday and will continue through November 29. This exciting tribal art event comprises some twenty-five thematic exhibitions by a host of distinguished dealers, such as Didier Claes, Kevin Conru, Jo de Buck, Patrick Mestdagh, Serge Schoffel, and many more.

For more information, visit Thema's official Facebook page.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Native American Art Sale at Bonhams

Bonhams will present a large sale of Native American art and artifacts in San Francisco on December 8. Among the hundreds of lots will be a wide range of Southwest figures, jewelry, and basketry, as well as a selection of Spanish Colonial works. A few of the sale's highlights, pictured below, are a monumental Apache olla, a fine Northwest Coast chilkat blanket, and a rare Mojave cradle figure.

View the online catalogue.

Images courtesy of Bonhams

Thursday, November 20, 2014

African, Oceanic and North American Art Sale at Christie's

On December 11, Christie's will present a sale of fine tribal art and artifacts in Paris. The lots will comprise a wide range of beautiful works from New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Central and West Africa, and elsewhere.

View the online catalogue.

Dance headdress  -  Tsimshian or Haisla, Northwest Coast

Hook figure  -  Iatmul, Papua New Guinea

Ceremonial adze  -  Maori, New Zealand

Kifwebe mask  -  Luba, D.R. Congo

Lime spatula  -  Massim, Papua New Guinea

Deble figure  -  Senufo, Côte d'Ivoire
Images courtesy of Christie's

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Les Affinités Électives d'Alexis Bonew at Sotheby's

On December 10, Sotheby's will present the African art collection of Alexis Bonew in Paris. Composed in an epic manner, this collection of art from the Congo reveals the work of a humanist spirit, a lover of ancient civilisations, ancient languages, Classical and African culture; a man whose appreciation for beauty consisted as much of philosophy and science as of feeling.

View the online catalogue.

Power figure  -  Songye, D.R. Congo

Muminia mask  -  Lega, D.R. Congo

Cannabis mortar  -  Luluwa, D. R. Congo

Ivory figure  -  Lega, D.R. Congo

Power figure  -  Kongo, D.R. Congo
Images courtesy of Sotheby's