West Africa, Mali, Bamana/Malinke peoples, ca. early to mid-20th century CE. A hand-carved door lock depicting a stylized anthropomorphic figure in the traditional Bamana style. The horizontal slide bar has a rectangular groove along the top as well as incised crosshatch motifs across the front, and the vertical figural body is decorated with linear motifs and impressed circular patterns. The abstract head bears a minimalist countenance of a T-shaped nose and eyebrows and rests atop a stocky neck. The pointed element at the bottom of the body is suggestive of a phallus and indicates this figure's gender as a male. Size: 15.4" W x 15.3" H (39.1 cm x 38.9 cm); 17.75" H (45.1 cm) on included custom stand.
Provenance: ex-private Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA collection; ex-private old New England, USA collection, acquired in the 1970s; ex-Dr. Peter Horvath collection, Massachusetts and Florida, USA
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Nicks and abrasions to lock bar, vertical body and head, peripheries, and verso, with encrustations and fading to pigment, and light softening to some finer details, otherwise intact and very good. Nice remains of pigment throughout.