NEW YORK — Bonhams is thrilled with the results of its Nov. 20, 2012, African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art sale in New York, which has been confirmed as Bonhams’ most successful sale of its kind to date.
Rare Senufo equestrian figure, Ivory Coast, 24 1/8 inches tall, wood. Sold for $62,500 at Bonhams African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art Sale, Nov. 20, 2012.
Photo courtesy Bonhams.
The wide variety of interested participants and impressive sell-through rate of the property attest to the growing interest in this unique market; new clients accounted for more than 25 percent of the active bidders.
The top three lots all hailed from the African section of the sale, illustrating the lingering fascination with the visually arresting figurative imagery common in traditional African art. A rare Senufo equestrian figure from the Ivory Coast brought $61,500, which was closely followed by an exceptional Baule male standing figure, also from the Ivory Coast, that sold for $47,500. In addition to the successes of works from the Ivory Coast, sculptures from the Congo did very well.
A strikingly geometric Sikasingo/Buyu male figure from the Democratic Republic of the Congo easily surpassed its presale estimate of $8,000 to $12,000, to sell after intense bidding for a remarkable $36,900.
Bonhams’ next sale of African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art will take place in New York in early May 2013.
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Exceptional Baule Male Standing Figure, Ivory Coast. height 20 1/2 inches. Wood.
This exceptionally carved figure stands in an attentive posture with shoulders rolled back, arms at the sides and hands with elongated fingers resting on the stomach. A most striking feature is his intricately carved and braided tripartite beard which curves delicately almost half way down the torso. The finely incised coiffure is accentuated with two conical, crescent-form decorations on top and a raised S-form element beginning at the temples, curving over the ears and ending at the back of the neck; raised scarifications highlight the temples, the neck, the back and the chest; the proportionally balanced torso with muscular buttocks and calves terminating at the now lost feet; fine dark-brown patina overall
Sold for $47,500
Sikasingo Male Figure, Democratic Republic of the Congo. height 11 1/2 inches. Wood, palm oil
An aesthetically balanced work with the geometric angles of the arms reflecting with the angles in the head, neck and chest. The legs now missing from insect damage which does not deter from its overall aura of serenity and gentility; fine dark-brown sticky patina. Sold for $37,500