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Lot 0212B
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20th C. Asante Gilt Wood Linguist Staff - Elephant
Item Details
Description
West Africa, Ghana, Asante (Ashanti, Achanti) people, ca. early to mid 20th century CE. One of my absolute favorites, this is a wooden staff, composed of two pieces, capped by a large elephant and decorated with shimmering gold sheet, black cloth, and woven yarn. The elephant is completely covered with gold which conforms to the incised motifs on the animal's body; this style is mirrored on the base and center, which are also wrapped in gold leaf. The elephant's body is large, with its long trunk trailing to the ground, where its tip rests. The skin is scored, giving it a wrinkled, wizened appearance. The size and strength of the elephant makes it a revered animal among the Asante. Size: 6" W x 25.5" H (15.2 cm x 64.8 cm); 26" H (66 cm) on included custom stand.

Hand-carved staffs decorated with gold leaf were created to act as insignia of office for an okyeame, who was a high ranking member of the Asante court and who advised the ruler. One of the okyeame's most important roles is to act as a go between for a petitioner and the king; the role of intermediary has led to the okyeame being called a "linguist" who communicates for someone else to the king. The imagery of the okyeame's staff is meant to tell a proverb, usually one about power and the responsibilities of the ruler.

Provenance: private New York, New York, USA collection; ex-Mildred Wiley Estate collection, Englewood, New Jersey, USA, acquired 2004

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.

#141393
Condition
Small losses to the gold sheet as shown. Similarly, the cloth has some losses, also visible in the photographs. The form is well preserved.
Buyer's Premium
  • 24.5%

20th C. Asante Gilt Wood Linguist Staff - Elephant

Estimate $800 - $1,200
Nov 29, 2018
See Sold Price
Starting Price $400
Shipping, Payment & Auction Policies
Ships from Louisville, CO, United States
Artemis Gallery

Artemis Gallery

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Louisville, CO, United States
6,184 Followers

Holiday Glitz - Ancient / Ethnographic Art

Nov 29, 2018 10:00 AM EST|
Louisville, CO, USA
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0212B: 20th C. Asante Gilt Wood Linguist Staff - Elephant

Sold for $450
2 Bids
Est. $800 - $1,200Starting Price $400
Nov 29, 2018 10:00 AM EST
Buyer's Premium 24.5%

Lot 0212B Details

Description
...
West Africa, Ghana, Asante (Ashanti, Achanti) people, ca. early to mid 20th century CE. One of my absolute favorites, this is a wooden staff, composed of two pieces, capped by a large elephant and decorated with shimmering gold sheet, black cloth, and woven yarn. The elephant is completely covered with gold which conforms to the incised motifs on the animal's body; this style is mirrored on the base and center, which are also wrapped in gold leaf. The elephant's body is large, with its long trunk trailing to the ground, where its tip rests. The skin is scored, giving it a wrinkled, wizened appearance. The size and strength of the elephant makes it a revered animal among the Asante. Size: 6" W x 25.5" H (15.2 cm x 64.8 cm); 26" H (66 cm) on included custom stand.

Hand-carved staffs decorated with gold leaf were created to act as insignia of office for an okyeame, who was a high ranking member of the Asante court and who advised the ruler. One of the okyeame's most important roles is to act as a go between for a petitioner and the king; the role of intermediary has led to the okyeame being called a "linguist" who communicates for someone else to the king. The imagery of the okyeame's staff is meant to tell a proverb, usually one about power and the responsibilities of the ruler.

Provenance: private New York, New York, USA collection; ex-Mildred Wiley Estate collection, Englewood, New Jersey, USA, acquired 2004

All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back.

A Certificate of Authenticity will accompany all winning bids.

We ship worldwide to most countries and handle all shipping in-house for your convenience.

#141393
Condition
...
Small losses to the gold sheet as shown. Similarly, the cloth has some losses, also visible in the photographs. The form is well preserved.

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Artemis Gallery
720.890.7700
686 S. Taylor Avenue Suite 106
Louisville, CO 80027
USA
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