African Collectibles from Functional, Funky to Fantastic

Many artists, connoisseurs and art collectors see the beauty and genius in the forms that African artists have in the past and currently do create. Non-African admirers of African art often find it hard to view African art from an African perspective. From this viewpoint the intent with which an object was made and how how it was employed are much more important in many cases than the age (which is how fakes are judged in many other genres of collecting).

This viewpoint was observed by myself in many different ways; I shall never forget the following experience. In Africa with a much older African friend, a white man walked by with his very beautiful African girlfriend. She could have graced the cover of many a magazine in the West. My African friend chuckled and asked me why white men came to Africa and chose less than attractive women. His understanding of beauty was very different.

Most of the examples presented here have been collected with what was the creator or artist's intent - for what purpose was the object created and how was the item employed.