Additional Information: The statues of the Attye are some of the most ravishing of all African statuary, combining the best features of Baule artistry with a unique "lagoon" appearance. The bulbous arms and legs, serene face and body shape common to the Attye show definite Baule influence, but Lagoon carvings are stronger and bolder, more daring, with the sometimes massive volumes offset by muscular, but stubby arms. The effect can be extraordinary. This magnificent female is a bit more slender than usual, leaning toward the Baule ideal in body shape, yet it is undoubtedly a Lagoon figure. Unique to the Attye, the scarification marks on the neck and abdomen are achieved by the insertion of small wooden plugs. Representing female fecundity, these statues were used in rituals to assist these important forces. The statues were also employed by healers to cure sickness and to convey messages to the spirit world. The dark leathery patina on our figure is glorious, and a testament to its age and importance to the village. Having an area about the size of Germany, squarish Côte d'Ivoire is bordered on the south by the Atlantic Ocean, on the west by Liberia and Guinea, to the north by Mali and Burkina Faso, and on the east by Ghana. Except for the western hill country around Man, Côte d'Ivoire is mostly flat. The coastal area is notable for an inland lagoon that starts at the Ghana border and stretches 300km (190mi) along the entire eastern half of the coast. The cultures of the Lagoon area are a loosely-mixed association of 12 different language groups, and their arts are rare and difficult to attribute. The pegs used by the Attye are distinctive, but on occasion you will find similar scars used by other groups.
The offered figure would be well placed in any collection.
For more information and examples see ART OF AFRICA by Visona et al.
I have examined this piece and agree with the description.
Niangi Batulukisi, PhD.