FCP CORIDON present his new exhibition-sale: 62 canes from Africa
SCULPTING IS MEANING
Whether they are canes of authority or dignitaries, scepters of command or dancing sticks, they have all been sculpted with a particular purpose: to signify.
Highly symbolic, these objects materialized power, rank, reward or prestige.
Through these sculpted figures, Africa and its cultures give us many symbols and ways of approaching this material that is wood. Appropriate it, magnify it to finally make it say.
Sixty-two canes have been brought together to bear witness to this act which spans places and times: sculpting is signifying.
One of the objects in this collection was the driving force behind the creation of the exhibition. This is a dignitary cane made by Master Sra, Dans/Bassa culture in Ivory Coast, around 1920-1930.
Made of monoxyle wood, its pommel is carved with a female figure in the round standing upright. His hands are placed on his abdomen, his fists closed, his chest drooping and his legs bent, individualized from each other. Her oval face is flanked by two thin incised braids, her ears are sculpted in the shape of a C, her eyes are two tapered almonds, her nose is thin and her lips are finely hemmed. His body is marked with geometric scarifications on the chest, back, abdomen and under the umbilicus – the latter is slightly protruding. The female figure rests on a circular base with incised oblique bands.
The barrel is punctuated by three curved rings, the upper front segment is animated by a facial mask.
Master Sra (1880-1955) was a sculptor considered a superior being capable, like God, of creating the most beautiful things. This is what the name attributed to him means: “God” or “creator”. His working methods and executions remain a mystery as he never worked in the eyes of other individuals.
In the culture of the Ivory Coast, very few sculptors have been known and recognized.
We find in this sculpture, the balance, particularly at the level of the hairstyle, very recognizable from the works of Master Sra. These two small mats which fall are of a rare delicacy in African sculpture.
This cane has not undergone any restoration, it is in absolutely perfect condition.
Finesse, emotion, aesthetics, beautiful provenance, the evidence of this piece makes it a true masterpiece.