The Auctions Database of Ancient Arts from Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas.
Paris, 17 September 2018
Handovers to the next generation, a rise in the number of objects on sale, the creation of events on the market, a change in the way players behave... 2017 was a good year for arts hailing from outside Europe, but it looks like it might have been a transition period.
For around twenty years now, both auction figures and observations made by dealers and experts have attested to a healthy growing tribal-art market, which tends to be stable in its practices. In auction rooms, 2017 confirmed these sound results with a return to growth after two fairly flat years. Achieving a turnover of a little over €80 million, this is the second-best year in the history of the market (which includes classical African, Oceanian, pre-Colombian and North American arts) following an exuberant2014. This year, Sotheby’s sold the Frum and Myron Kunin collections, which together accounted for sales totalling €45.5 million. A hefty enough figure to tip the scales... “The market is doing very well,” enthuses Laurent Dodier, a French dealer and valuer from [.../...]See more
Paris, 15 September 2018
There are certain auction sales that mark their time by establishing a new trend or signalling a change in era. This was what the Victor Choquet sale did for Cézanne, or Sean Scully for Pop Art. And perhaps Pierre Loos will trigger the popularity of Congolese modern artists in a similar way?
“During my three-part sale, fifty years of my life are going to go by, corresponding with what I am, my desire to transmit things to others. For someone like me who’s had the luck to travel, leaving without transmission is like running away like a thief. While some construct walls, I prefer bridges.” The renowned Belgian dealer is getting set to sell part of his large collection over three consecutive sales to be held at Piasa on 17 and 18 September.
The first will be for ethnographic and primitive arts – around 500 lots whose estimates tend towards fairly reasonable prices. Up for grabs will be numerous headrests, Kuba textiles from Kasai (which Pierre Loos helped to bring to public attention), and votive statuettes...
The second sale will be [.../...]See more
Paris, 9 September 2018
A homage to a mythical exhibition from the 1930s, an extensive dialogue with contemporary creation, and a unique assembly of works from outside Europe... This is what you can expect from the 17th edition of Parcours des Mondes, one of the world’s biggest and most prestigious primitive-arts fairs.
Its reputation is now a given. After notching up sixteen editions, the Parcours des Mondes has become an unmissable event for dealers, collectors, museum directors, and also tribal-art lovers. But what else would you expect when the organisers of the Parisian fair, steered by Pierre Moos, have never skimped on quality, but consistently invited the top dealers in their respective specialities?
Whether these dealers come from Paris, other French towns, or further afield, there are 64 of them present at Saint-Germain-des-Près for this year’s vintage. From Rue des Beaux-Arts to Rue Mazarine, passing through Rue Guénégaud, they are showing masterpieces patiently picked up from Africa and Oceania – often these dealers are taking a breather after [.../...]See more
Paris, 8 September 2018
What strategy are you implementing for Parcours des Mondes?
With sixteen editions behind it, Parcours des Mondes has become a leading player in the world of international tribal- and Asian-arts fairs. The legacy of these sixteen editions, all these sold objects, all these encounters, needs to be consolidated by maintaining what has been responsible for the quality of Parcours des Mondes until now: rigour in the selection of exhibitors. What makes a fair special is the diversity of its different stakeholders. In the first place, we address dealers: these are our clients, and they’re the ones we work with for six months in order to construct a rich event. But our audience is made up of art lovers, collectors, with demanding requirements. We need to find a good balance.
What approaches do you follow to strengthen this renown?
First, we wish to promote the heritage aspect of Parcours des Mondes. We’re also focusing on the need to reinvent our communication methods – we’re opening up more to social networks for example. Next, to maintain [.../...]See more
Paris, 7 September 2018
Do you think that the fair, celebrating its 17th birthday this year, has reached maturity? Are you still seeking to enrich it with new perspectives?
I’m very proud of the renown that Parcours des Mondes enjoys today. When we took it over several years ago, the event was going downhill. Over time and with a lot of passion, we’ve worked to give it the face it has today, by selecting participants from the world’s top galleries, which isn’t so easy given that there are very few of them. This might seem paradoxical, but what you need to bear in mind is that there are around sixty tribal-arts galleries worldwide, no more. By way of comparison, if you take any building in the Chelsea district in New York, you’ll find the same number of contemporary-art galleries, if not more. Clearly, we live in a microcosm from which we’re taking the best. This year, we refused about twenty potential participants due to the quality of works – primordial in our eyes – and also due to the fact that the number of galleries admitted to the event cannot be [.../...]See more
Besanceuil, 21 May 2018
Besanceuil, a French village situated a few kilometres away from the town of Cluny, will be playing host to a fair unlike any other: the Bourgogne Tribal Show.
It’s the first international tribal-art fair to be held in the countryside: the Bourgogne Tribal Show honours the arts from all over the world in the Burgundy countryside. From 24 to 27 May, a few kilometres away from the town of Cluny, visitors can discover a tight but eclectic selection of dealers. Julie Arnoux, director of the Bourgogne Tribal Art Show, is enthusiastic about the fair: “We love this event and we’ve introduced a few innovations this year. We’re backing up our fine selection of dealers with a combination of established galleries and young guns, as well as wide openness to international art (namely Asia and Egyptian antiquities).”
The fair’s Honorary President is Jean Roudillon, a tribal-art figure who, at 95 years old, has notched up time both as a dealer and a valuer. He shares his experience with us in the fair’s catalogue. Did we say catalogue? Art [.../...]See more
Brussels, 16 May 2018
Collectors and art lovers populate the world of ancient African, Oceanic and American arts. Laurent Granier takes a look at their backgrounds, the psychological mechanisms behind their passions, their doubts, and their strategies. With them, he discusses objects, their histories, and the market.
Set up in a room at the end of the hallway, the Grace Collection of African Art benefits from a presentation which only the talent of its creator, a Belgian designer (who wishes to remain anonymous), repeatedly and internationally acclaimed for his work, could have brought to such a level. It is a visually structured space of scenes, with professional lighting, a comprehensive library, a desk for studying and a daybed for relaxing. Everything is well-considered, mastered and arranged, down to the pedestals, which are personalized with a silver Grace Collection of African Art seal. Our encounter took place in the family apartment in Brussels on January 23rd 2018.
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Geneva, 15 May 2018
As the number-four exhibition of the MEG since the Swiss museum’s reopening, “Africa – Ecstatic Religions” draws up a portrait of the diversity and vivacity of African religious forms, their differences and reciprocal influences, but also their links: ecstasy as a means to experience one’s faith.
“Belief, ritual and spiritual experience: these are the cornerstones of religion, and the greatest of them is the last.” Boris Wastiau chose to quote Ioan Myrddin Lewis’ Ecstatic Religion (1971) to define the focuses of his exhibition, “Africa – Ecstatic Religions”. Perhaps he could also have borrowed the words of Mircea Eliade, who wrote an essay in 1964 (“La quête des origines de la religion”, published in La Nostalgie des Origines, also in 1971): “We know that we can only seize hold of the sacred through manifestations that are always historically conditioned. But the study of these manifestations doesn’t tell us what the sacred is, nor what a religious experience truly means.” Divided into four sections that cover [.../...]See more
Paris, 25 March 2018
From 4 to 8 April 2018, tribal art enthusiasts will be flocking to Paris Art Design!
At this 22nd edition of the fair, the French capital’s most talented galleries will be meeting up at the Jardin des Tuileries to celebrate creation and artistic taste. As is the case every year, the organisers have come up with a remarkable presentation of styles and eras, the guiding thread being prime aesthetics.
On the menu: modern art, contemporary design, furniture, jewellery… But also tribal art, with objects originating from Asia, America and Africa.
Among the French galleries that will be at the PAD this year, three are worth singling out. Galerie Lucas Ratton, specialised in ritual objects, is notably offering a Kuba bowl (Congo, 19th century) and a Pwo Tschokwe mask (Angola, 19th century). Then, there’s Galerie Afrique, presenting African sculptures and ethnographic objects. This year, we can discover a superb and rare polychrome butterfly mask from the Bwa people of Burkina Faso. “This one was collected in 1975 in the [.../...]See more
Maastricht, 23 March 2018
From 10 to 18 March 2018, the 31st edition of TEFAF Maastricht, the international fair for fine art and antiquities, kept its promises for tribal art.
The fair, presenting 275 exhibitors this year, is one of the year’s biggest art events, and covers over 7,000 years of art history.
TEFAF Tribal – the latest section to be launched by the event’s organisers – was a great success, both among the public, and commercially, namely thanks to the presence of prestigious brands like Anthony Meyer (Paris) and Donald Ellis (New York).
Among the pleasing sales notched up, we can single out the wooden bowl in the form of a bird (c.1800), which went for 285,000 euros (Donald Ellis Gallery), or the fragment from a monumental bronze statue which found a new owner at 250,000 euros (Merrin Gallery).
“This new edition of TEFAF lived up to my expectations in a very positive way,” comments dealer Anthony Meyer. “I met enthusiastic new clients and touched base with a few old buyers. It seems to me that TEFAF’s tribal section has reached [.../...]See more