head, Edo, Benin Kingdom, Nigeria, terracotta, circa 16th Century, 9
1/2 inches high
Lot 188 is a
good Edo terracotta head, circa 16th century, fromthe Benin Kingdom in
Nigeria. It is 9 1/2 inches high. It was acquired
in Benin City circa 1951-2 and was in the collection of Merton D.
Simpson of New York and Robin Symes of London. It was
illustrated on the cover of M. Peter Piening's "Masterpieces
of African Sculpture" in 1964, In his catalogue essay,
Heinrich Schweizer notes that while there are hundreds of brass Benin
heads, only about 60 terracotta heads are known. It has an
estiamte of $400,000 to $600,000. It sold for $1,930,000.
"head representing a rule," Udo kingdom, Nigeria, circa 15th-16th
Century, 9 inches high
The Udo kingdom
thrived about 50 miles away from Benin City in Nigeria in the 15th-16th
Century and Lot 189 is a bronze head representing a Udo ruler.
It is 9 inches high. It was once in the collection
of Carroll S. Tyson, a painter, of Philadelphia. The catalogue suggests
that there may be only about 16 such heads. It has a modest estimate of
$100,000 to $150,000. It sold for $730,000.
Bamana female marionette bust, Mali, 27 1/4 inches
Lot 143 is an
exceptional Bamana female marionette bust from Mali. It is 27
1/4 inches and it is the most beautiful object in the auction.
It was once in the collection of Samuel Goldwyn Jr. of Los
Angeles. It has a very modest estimate of $8,000 to $12,000. It sold for $9,375.
Attie figure, Lagoons Region, Ivory Coast, 21 5/8 inches high
Lot 156 is an
impressive Attie figure from the Lagoons Region of the Ivory Coast.
It is 21 5/8 inches high and was once in the collection of
Merton D. Simpson of New York. The catalogue entry notes that
little is known about these ladder-shaped figure that are "inventively
reductive abstraction." It has a modest estimate of $12,000
to $18,000. It failed to sell.
Bassa Janus Bundu mask, Liberia, 17 inches high
Lot 161 is a
very impressive Bassa Janus Bundu mask with a spectacular headdress
from Liberia that was acquired by Charles D. Miller II from
Esther Jawara in Liberia in the 1970s. It is 17 inches high.
It has a modest estimate of $15,000 to $25,000. It failed to sell.
Mask, We-Ubi, Ivory Coast, 13 1/2 inches
Lot 178 is a
very dramatic and ferocious mask that is We-Ibi from the Ivory Coast.
It is 13 1/2 inches high and its many twisted horn shapes
suggest, according to the catalogue, a tarantula, "rendering it
invincible." It has a modest estimate of $7,000 to $10,000. It sold for $21,250.
statue, Mumuye, Nigeria, 49 inches high
Lot 181 is a
large Mumuye statue from Nigeria that is 49 inches high and was once in
the collection of Philippe Guimiot of Brussels. The catalogue entry
notes that prior to the discovery by Guimiot and Kerchache in the late
1960s the "only accessible example of this tradition in Western museums
was a figure that entered the British Museum in 1922" and which was the
subject of several drawings by Henry Moore that year. It has
an estimate of $60,000 to $90,000. It sold for $62,500.
Vertical mask, Benue River, probably Wurkun or Bikwin, Nigeria, 56 3/4
Lot 180 is a
spectacular and large vertical bask from the Benue River in Nigeria
that is probably Wurkun or Bikwin. It is 56 3/4 inches high and comes
from the Liz Claiborne Collection. It has an estimate of
$30,000 to $50,000. It failed to sell.
Lot 91, a
gable ornament figure, Maori, New Zealand, 26 1/8 inches high
Lot 91 is a very
fine Maori gable ornament figure from New Zealand that is 26 1/8 inches
high. It was collected in situ in the 1840s and was exhibited
at the Museum of the Northamptonshire Regiment in Abington Park, United
Kingdom from 1938 to 1982. It has a modest estimate of
$30,000 to $50,000. It sold for $75,000.
"Baga altar figure (Elek)," Guinea, 13 inches high
Lot 166 is a
very handsome Baga altar figure (Elek) from Guinea. It is 13
inches high., It was once in the collection of Nelson A.
Rockefeller and has been widely exhibited. It has an estimate
of $20,000 to $30,000. It failed to sell.