NEWSLETTER


Bruce Frank Primitive Art
New York City, NY
+1 917 733 9589

Ancestor Figure

Boiken, coastal Prince Alexander Mountains region, Papua New Guinea
19th C.

Provenance: Collected before 1973 by Wayne Heathcote; within the archive of the Museum of Primitive Art, New York, there is a photo of this figure with handwritten notes by Douglas Newton, Coll Wayne Heathcote, NY 1973, 10-4-73, NG-2, Abelam or Boiken
Acquired by James Willis, San Francisco
Private American collection

This exceptional stone-carved, pre-contact figure is amongst the oldest and finest examples I have encountered. The original pigments are muted and with age have become an integral part of the wood. Most known examples are sculpturally flat and static; this sculpture is both rounded and dynamic and has subtle counter balancing movement, its legs sway to the left while the arms and head tilt to the right. Also of note, the septum of its nose is pierced and below that, a large disk shaped design has been carved, most likely representing a shell ornament. The disk is carved in high relief, and extends down from the bridge of the nose, covering where the mouth would normally appear.

Ancestor Figure

Boiken, coastal Prince Alexander Mountains region, Papua New Guinea
19th C.

Provenance: Collected before 1973 by Wayne Heathcote; within the archive of the Museum of Primitive Art, New York, there is a photo of this figure with handwritten notes by Douglas Newton, Coll Wayne Heathcote, NY 1973, 10-4-73, NG-2, Abelam or Boiken
Acquired by James Willis, San Francisco
Private American collection

This exceptional stone-carved, pre-contact figure is amongst the oldest and finest examples I have encountered. The original pigments are muted and with age have become an integral part of the wood. Most known examples are sculpturally flat and static; this sculpture is both rounded and dynamic and has subtle counter balancing movement, its legs sway to the left while the arms and head tilt to the right. Also of note, the septum of its nose is pierced and below that, a large disk shaped design has been carved, most likely representing a shell ornament. The disk is carved in high relief, and extends down from the bridge of the nose, covering where the mouth would normally appear.

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