The first examples of sub-Saharan African art date back to about nine thousand years ago (7000 b.C.) and exactly to decorated ceramic vessels that had a specific use in everyday life.
In fact, in African art an object is rarely created for aesthetic or decorative purposes, rather its beauty is closely linked both to the function it plays in human life and to the link with power and religion. Only some very precious things have been used to embellish the royal residences, or of chiefs, in celebration of the power of a king, as in the kingdom of Benin.
African art is above all a symbolic art, aimed more at expressing concepts than at faithfully representing nature. His language is stylized and highly expressive.
Sculpture is the most widespread form of figurative art in African art. The sculpted objects are mainly made of wood, made without preparatory drawings and generally depicting the human figure, which often represents an ancestor or a tutelary deity. The work of art must not represent a portrait, but embody an ideal image.
Of great importance in African art are masks, both of man and of animal, of great expressive power.
The aim of the African mask is not the disguise or dissimulation of the person, as in the Western world, but is to connect the earthly nature to the transcendent nature. They form the link with the ancestors and the spirits of the afterlife; they confer prestige on those who possess them, generally those who hold political positions; they are fundamental for collective rituals, such as the transition from youth to adult life, for fertility, initiation or celebration of motherhood rites. Precisely for this reason the African mask is conceived to be seen in movement, in a context of music or dance.
According to the tribes and ethnic groups to which they belong, African masks vary in their conformation, presenting different stylistic typologies ranging from the essential design of the Dogon to the more figurative one of the Baoulé.
The objects of African art fit perfectly into any type of furniture, both classic and modern. A few pieces are enough, sometimes even just one, to immediately characterize a space in an original way with great visual impact.
In our online shop you can find sculptures, masks, furnishings, ceremonial cups that can be inserted into our interiors with new purposes, different from those for which they were created, but certainly with a great decorative effect.
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