Tellem Figure, Dogon, Mali

Regular price $7,750.00

Dogon People, Mali: Tellem Ancestor Figure, Late 19th/Early 20th Century. Carved wood with encrusted libations and dark overall patina. The figure's arms are raised in a gesture of spiritual appeal; its pendulous breasts indicate that it represents an elder; Jewelry on the arms and neck indicate wealth and prestige; Scarification marks on the cheeks, breasts and torso show ideals of beauty, and the bent legs provide the figure with an animated quality, as if dancing.

Figures such as this were placed in shrines and venerated with libations and sacrifices. The figure itself represents a Dogon ancestor, the pose of upraised arms references the Tellem (the people who preceded the Dogon in their area of Mali.)


PROVENANCE: Private collection.

CONDITION: Good condition. Heavily patination of libations, minor abrasions and chips (the right eye is chipped), some old desiccation cracks.