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Dan Standing Female Liberia 16 Inch African Art

Product #: 83277
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Title Dan Standing Female Liberia 16 Inch African Art
Type of Object Carving, Figure
Country of Origin Liberia, Cote d'Ivoire
People Dan
Materials Wood, cotton, amulet with unknown material inside
Approximate Age Mid 20th century
Dimensions Height is 16.5 inches
Overall Condition Good
Damage/Repair Cracks in torso and to the back, scratches and wear on the surface, leg repaired

Additional Information: A well-carved examples of Dan  figures. the surface shows much handling and good age. 

Such a figure represents a "favorite spouse," a high honor in Dan households where there is more than one wife. A glorious face adorns this "portrait" piece, and her high status is further emphasized by intricate scarification Dan art is highly-collected, with masks dominating, mostly because there are so few statues on the market. A "favorite spouse" is a wonderful find, and one of the rare instances of verified portrait art in all of West Africa. The widely-scattered Dan, historically a warrior people, are thought to have been in the Ivory Coast area for perhaps two thousand years, though the evidence for this is admittedly scant. What is known, however, is that the Dan were cruelly exploited by slave raiders in the 17th and 18th centuries. The repatriation of Dan slaves back to Africa was one of the primary motivations in the creation of the state of Liberia in 1847.

The Dan have no centralized government, and each village is relatively autonomous. The ability to accumulate wealth and demonstrate one's skill are highly prized by Dan society, and the belief is known as the "tin." This social system still exists today, though the ways to gain wealth and prestige have changed, from prowess in agriculture and hunting, to success in the diamond mines and rubber plantations. Dan art continues to enrich the lives of collectors around the world.

I have examined this piece and agree with the description

Niangi Batulukisi, Ph.D.