World record for a Maori wood weapon at Bonhams New York

By Artkhade

New York, 15 May 2014

World record for a Maori wood weapon at Bonhams New York

Bonhams, the third largest international fine art auction house, achieved both a world record for a Maori wood weapon sold at auction and the highest price for a Polynesian work of art at auction during its African, Oceanic and Pre-Columbian Art sale on May 15. The work to set such records was an important and rare wooden Maori Handclub 'wahaika' from New Zealand, formerly in the James Hooper Collection, that sold for $62,500.

The sale was well attended with spirited bidding for Oceanic art in the auction room, over the phones and online. Worldwide interest was seen in a selection of Austral Islands ceremonial paddles on offer in the sale, most of which achieved prices above their pre-sale estimates.

According to Fred Backlar, Specialist of African, Oceanic and Pre-Columbian Art at Bonhams, the auction demonstrated the strength of Oceanic art in the Tribal market. "It is an area where the Surrealists originally drew inspiration for their art," he commented.

Notable in the auction were [.../...]

See more

Tags: Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


Quantifying the art market: a transparent process?

By Artkhade with Art Media Agency

Paris, 17 April 2014,

Quantifying the art market: a transparent process?

In art, a quantitative approach is often given bad press. Those who pursue analyses based on value are often accused of relegating the importance of art works themselves – reducing them to mere financial assets. A number of dealers pretend to ignore the industry’s financial side, placing a stronger emphasis on the aesthetic or emotional aspect of their work. The reality of the market, however, means that financial considerations remain – and are increasingly – a vital component of the art world.

Art has often sought to avoid an association with finance and has, in part, succeeded. A work of art – even one considered to have little financial worth – is capable of attaining a very personal value which a treasury bond will never reach. Yet, in the context of an increasingly liquid market affected by ongoing inflation, information is key; thus, the importance of accurate data sources becomes increasingly important.

In the 1990s, a number of data specialists used the development of the [.../...]

See more

Tags: Native American Art, Aboriginal Art, Pre-Columbian Art, Asian Art, Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


Second part of the Allan Stone Collection to be auctioned at Sotheby's

By Artkhade with Art Media Agency

New York, 28 March 2014, Art Media Agency (AMA).

Second part of the Allan Stone Collection to be auctioned at Sotheby's

The second session of the sale of the collection of Allan Stone is to take place on 16 May at Sotheby’s New York.

It is to present works of African, Pre-Colombian, and Native American art. The first session of pieces collected by the famous art dealer took place in November 2013, achieving $11,489,750 — one of the most significant totals for an auction of African and Oceanian art, with a sell-through rate of 94%. The auction’s major lot, a sculpture of a Songye Power Figure from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, was sold to the Dallas Museum of Art for $2,165,000.

Allan Stone (1932-2006) acquired his first Nkisi sculpture in 1954, while he was still a student. In 1960 he opened a gallery in New York, where he juxtaposed African sculpture with artworks by Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, Joseph Cornell, John Graham, John Chamberlain and Arman, engendering dialogue and exchange between the two. Over the course of the decades that followed he [.../...]

See more

Tags: Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


Art of the South Seas at Bonhams San Francisco

By Artkhade

San Francisco, 9 February 2014

World record for a Maori wood weapon at Bonhams New York

Bonhams will hold its annual Art of the South Seas auction February 9 in San Francisco, representing all parts of Oceania, with works from Australia, Indonesia, Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia. The sale will feature approximately 184 quality works for beginning and tenured collectors alike.

Highlights will commence with a very rare, 12¾ inch-tall, wood fisherman's god from Rarotonga Island of the Cook Islands, from the late 19th century/early 20th century (est. $6,000-9,000).

From there, standing out in the sale, will be an extremely rare Maori short club, or mere, from New Zealand, made of Greenstone/Nephrite jade (est. $40,000-60,000). The only other known short club to feature a manaia head carved at its bottom exists within The Maori Collections of the British Museum. Historically, such short clubs were both insignia of male warrior status and weapons, and were carried in the belt with a short wrist-cord to prevent loss in combat.

Also in the auction from New Zealand will [.../...]

See more

Tags: Oceanic Art, Art Market


From Primitive to Prosperous: the Complicated Rise of Tribal Art

By Artkhade with Art Media Agency

Paris, 10 September 2013

From Primitive to Prosperous: the Complicated Rise of Tribal Art

Tribal Art has witnessed a long and complex evolution, with European art history oscillating wildly in its attitude to the genre. Once referred to pejoratively as ‘primitive art’, tribal art has since been recognised for the important influence it had on the works of Expressionist, Surrealist and Cubist artists. Now, the field is recognised as rich and diverse, with museums, galleries and collectors across the globe placing an important focus on the works of indigenous peoples from Africa, North America and Oceania. Artkhade with Art Media Agency examined the platforms which are specialising in the genre today, looking at the presence of Tribal Art in Galleries, Museums, at auction houses and in dealerships.

A Slow Rise to Success

‘Primitive art’ is now recognised as a dismissive term, connoting an outdated Euro-centric attitude which coincided with the height of imperialism, colonialism, and the exploitation of countries by the West. The title connoted the belief that [.../...]

See more

Tags: Aboriginal Art, Asian Art, Pre-Columbian Art, Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market, Events, Fairs & Shows


Sale of Allan Stone Collection at Sotheby's

By Artkhade with Art Media Agency

New York, 16 July 2013

Vente de la Collection Allan Stone chez Sotheby's

On 15 November, Sotheby’s will conduct the sale of a first part of the Allan Stone Collection, including African, Oceanic and Indonesian art. The second part of the sale will be organised in November 2014.

300 works belonging to the art trader from New York will be offered on auction, thus forming an ensemble estimated at over $20m. Sotheby’s announced that this sale will be the biggest organised in New York since the sale of Helena Rubinstein in 1966. Among the most notable pieces will be sculptures by Songye and Kongo from the Democratic Republic of Congo, including a figure representing the Songye community (79 cm), estimated at more than $1m. Some original works from Nigeria, Cameroun and Mali will also be part of the sale.

A selection of these lots will be exhibited in Paris from 10 to 15 September, on the occasion of the event titled “Parcours des Mondes” (Around the World).

Tags: Asian Art, Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


New record for the African and Oceanic art department at Christie's Paris

By Artkhade with Art Media Agency

Paris, 25 June 2013

African and Oceanic Art Christie's Collection Jolika

The sale of African and Oceanic art, held on 19 June at Christie’s Paris, made a total turnover of €7.896m, which is the best result ever for the department.

An important part of the record belongs to the Jolika Collection (Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco), which made $3.172m, becoming the most important collection of Oceanic art ever to be sold on auction. It is also worth noticing that the world record for a piece of Oceanian art was established with the sale of a Biwat Ridgepole Figure, issued from Mid-Yuat, Bas-Sépik, Papoua New Guinea, purchased for €2.505m, far beyond its high estimate of €1m.

In addition, a “Baga Snake” Bansonyi, issued from the Republic of Guinea, was sold for €2.337m and established a new record for Baga art.

Tags: Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


Oceanic and African art on sale at Native

By Artkhade with Art Media Agency

Brussels, 4 June 2013

Vente d'Art Océanien et Africain chez Native

On 8 June 2013, auction house Native will be organising a sale of African and Oceanic items in Brussels.

Among the highlights of the session, let us mention a 16th-century Dogon altar piece from Mali, estimated between €20,000 and €30,000, a Senofu female figure from Ivory Coast, collected before 1940, also estimated between €20,000 and €30,000, Dan masks from Ivory Coast (from €2,000 to €10,000) and a Kanak roof finial, estimated between €10,000 and €15,000. Among other pieces from Oceania is a hei tiki pendant from New Zealand.

Finally, a major lot comprised of an ensemble of lime spatulas from Papua New Guinea, estimated between €800,000 and €1.2m.

Tags: Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


Bonhams New York sees highest price for a Polynesian piece at auction during Tribal Arts Week

By Artkhade

New York, 17 May 2013

Bonhams presents African, Oceanic and Pre-Columbian Art

A rare canoe prow from the Maquesas Islands soared past its pre-sale estimate of $8,000-12,000 to sell for $70,900 dollars at Bonhams May 15 African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art auction at the Madison Avenue salesroom. It was the highest price realised for any Polynesian work of art at auction during Tribal Arts Week in New York.

Decorated with a classic Marquesan tiki figure, the wooden prow – or 'au 'au – would have been attached to the bow of a canoe. Marquesan 'au 'au show carved tiki figures seated and pushed backwards, as if by acceleration, and were primarily intended to be seen in profile as canoes sped through the water.

"This particular Marquesas prow is covered in linear tattooing and has especially naturalistic proportions, including fully articulated legs, which is very rare," explained Bonhams African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art Consultant, Fredric Backlar. "I always felt strongly that it was an exceptional example, and I am pleased bidders agreed."

The auction attracted [.../...]

See more

Tags: Pre-Columbian Art, Oceanic Art, African Art, Art Market


Extremely rare architectural figure from Angola offered at Bonhams New York

By Artkhade

New York, 13 May 2013

Bonhams presents African, Oceanic and Pre-Columbian Art

An extremely rare Chokwe architectural female figure from Angola dating to the early 20th century will lead Bonhams African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art auction on May 15 at the Madison Avenue salesroom (est. $90,000-120,000). Field-collected by Jacques Kerchache, the female figure, covered in ritualistic scarring, and has been widely published and featured in notable museum exhibitions. The well-sculpted head utilises black surfaces on the overall background of red to emphasise several important elements: the striped headdress, long eyebrows, coffee-bean eyes, and widened mouth, all of which has been enhanced with a white pigmentation, a symbol of authority in the Chokwe culture. Standing nearly four feet high, the impressive specimen would have been a part of an aristocratic household. Another superb example of the female form is a Baule Female Figure from the Ivory Coast (est. $20,000-30,000). Most likely carved in the 19th century or earlier, this stylized piece has an exceptional and highly [.../...]

See more

Tags: African Art, Oceanic Art, Pre-Columbian Art, Art Market