'These increasingly coveted ceremonial showpieces provide an unusual and dramatic counterpoint to sleek contemporary interiors' Virginia Blackburn
The use of tribal masks is a characteristic of the African culture during festivities. Masks can represent spirits, animals or mythological heroes, it is a symbolic way of honouring a person. Masks makers are considered high ranks in the villages because it is believed that there is a link to the spiritual world, this craft is passed on in the family. Some studies trace back the earliest masks during the Paleolithic era in Africa.
African art has influencesd European artistis since the early 20th century, artistic movements like cubism, fauvinism and expressionism have often drawn inspiration from the vast African heritage. The American art historian Robert Goldwater in his book 'Primivitism in Modern Paintings' invites the readers to recognize the apparent spontaneity of inspiration and the semplicity of technique whose eccelence we take for granted in the so-called primitive art.
In his passages Goldwater: ' The primitive is more instinctive, less bound by artistic convention and history, and as somehow closer to fundamental aspects of human existence. ' Many modern artists tried to capture some of this freedom.
The African fever still continues and it is strongly affirming it's position in the contemporary world of Art and Interior design, backed up by the soaring prices fetched at the latest auction houses.