Superb Asie Usu Figure – Baule – Ivory Coast
In very good state with lots of traces of offerings over a long period of time. It dates back to the first quarter of the 20th century.
Provenance: ex – collection of Dr. Huyen van Oey, Paris. Obtained from him by S. Westerdijk in 1968.
Asie Usu figures were used by Baule diviners to help them in their sessions of clair voyance by trance states. The figures were supposed to lodge a spirit of the bush, lured to take residence in them by offerings. Since such bush spirits like to live in beautiful figures, the Baule carvers did their best to accommodate them by sculpting special pieces of mostly seated males. Here the figure has no less than three extra heads attached to the main one to provide for a truly spectacular seat for the tutelary spirit. This figure is carved in the old Baule style of around 1920 with all the fineries of the tradition of that period. The long figure is extremely graceful in its slenderness. The idea of creating extra heads in the round is, as far as I know, only applied in the case of ceremonial staffs used by Baule chiefs as well as on heddle pulleys.
Literature: Daniel Hourdé: Baoulé, Paris, 2002, p.91.
Dimensions: 46 x 10 x 14 cm.
Region / People: The Baule occupy the central part of the Ivory Coast.
Material: hard wood.
Weight: 0.920 kg.
For the original text from seller, set language on this site to: English
Sold with written declaration of authenticity by Dr. P. Westerdijk, museum ethnologist and cultural anthropologist specialized in the material cultures of people living south of the Sahara.
Sent by registered and insured mail.
- Asie Usu Figure
- Ethnie / culture
- partie centrale de la côte d'ivoire
- bois dur
- Début du XXe siècle
- Bon état, utilisé avec des signes d'usure
- Vendu avec support
- 46×10×14 cm
- 0.92 kg