African art
October 25, 2008 2:18 PM   Subscribe

Much of the extraordinary variety of traditional art from Africa comes from the countries in West and Central Africa, because of the availability of wood (often called exotic woods) and metal. Hamill Gallery has organized their excellent site to show the materials, including textiles, metals, beads used, as well as the names of the many tribes and categories, such as animals. The images are accompanied by information about the art. The Yale University Art Gallery also has a nice selection of African art with information. The Africa Image Library offers an archive of images, which give a little backdrop to the lives and environment of the artists and artisans in various parts of Africa.

African Wood Figures / Fetishes / Dolls and Puppets

Google book: African Sculpture By the late Ladislas Segy, who was a pioneer among Westerners writing about the meanings and ritual uses of West African art and gallery owner

Traditional African art created before 1955 is considered "old", and usually quite costly, because many of the materials used, such as wood or barkcloth, were subject to decay by weather and bugs. [This was told to me by Merton Simpson.]

African Art history resources on the web
posted by nickyskye (5 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Another exceptional African wood artist: Charles Bies

Thank you for another wonderful post, as always, nicky.
posted by netbros at 9:34 PM on October 25, 2008

Often "African art" is associated with the kind of "folk art" we see from any small community with limited materials and technical tools. Today, this vast continent has produced many fine examples of contemporary art, as one might expect from a continent that has more large cities than the United States.
posted by twoleftfeet at 2:35 AM on October 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

wow, that Africa Image Library is great.

here's one of my favourite African countries.
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:56 AM on October 27, 2008

ah Mali. Have you been there Ubu? I love the art from that neck of the woods, so elegantly lean and geometric. The Ghanaian art too, which has a very different feel, gentler, rounder.
posted by nickyskye at 10:11 AM on October 27, 2008

sure have. the mud mosques are stunning.

djenne is probably the most famous.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:50 PM on October 27, 2008

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