Lot: 332

86th Tribal Art Auction

Sitting female figure

Nigeria, Urhobo

Provenance Size Starting price / estimated price
German Private Collection, collected in situ (1972-1979) H: 26.4 inch 2000 EUR
plus 21 % commission, VAT, transport and insurance

wood, reddish brown patina, kaolin "oorhe", camwood powder (above all backside), surface structure as a whole strongly marked by insect caused damage and weathering, the right arm missing completely, rep. (breakage: left leg), base; such figures depict ancestor spirits - the founding men and women of a community whose power and fame were such that in time they were elevated to the status of "edjo". In large groups "edjo" figures were housed in a single shrine building "oguan redjo". Here the figures are hidden from public view for all but a few days of the year. The community stages large annual festivals in honour of the "edjo", which include elaborate dances often accompanied by masquerade performances, lavish meals and extensive displays of wealth.