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Please comment on my Mahongwe guardian figure

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  • Junaid Gamieldien
    Hi, I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is intact (but looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete). Please provide
    Message 1 of 11 , Jan 27, 2006
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      Hi,

      I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is intact (but looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete). Please provide comments about the age/quality.
      Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of the group named : Junaid.
      Copy and paste this link:
      http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
      Thanks,
      Junaid

      PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more trustworthy (it seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he doesn't concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale. We'll see how that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).


    • Rand African Art
      Link to Junaid s Mahongwe photos: http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0 Junaid, Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow
      Message 2 of 11 , Jan 27, 2006
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        Link to Junaid's Mahongwe photos:
         
        Junaid,
        Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow up to a question you recently asked the group...
         
        I see that you decided to offer for sale your Kongo minkisi figures you asked the group about. I also see that you make statements in your description about age, and also statements about ritualistic use and rarity despite what people in the group told you. The statements you made in your descriptions seemed pretty authoritative to me, but it is your decision how you want to represent them.
         
        I am just not a big believer in misrepresentation of things, intentional or unintentional. If someone is unsure about something, they should not make authoritative statements in my opinion. As I said about the Lobi figure Jan asked about, age shouldn't be the big determining factor about an object, it should be the quality of an object and how well it conforms to traditional style in my opinion.
         
        When I first started out learning about African art, I didn't know that items were made specifically to sell to collectors or specifically for the market, I thought everything was made for and used by the people they represented. I had believed statements about age and so on when I bought some of my first objects, only to learn later that I was probably misled. I didn't get upset, instead I used these experiences to learn from and I chalked them up to experience.
         
        I don't think that everyone out there has to collect only old and authentic objects, I feel that people should collect what they want. The thing I do think that people should do is be educated collectors and educated consumers for whatever it is they collect.
         
        The main purpose of this discussion group and also of my website is to educate. I am a pretty vocal person, but I also take to heart what people tell me because I am still learning every day. I get my fair share of constructive critisism, and I try to take it to heart and learn from it and incorporate it into what I say and what I do in here, and on my website.
         
        If someone asks me, and/or others our opinions about something, it is up to the person asking the question to interpet the answers they receive, we can not make or expect you to believe something simply because we tell it to you. The person asking can learn from the answers, or incorporate those answers into their own thoughts on the subject at hand and come up with their own conclusions, they can take them and do with them what they want. By no means is anyone in this group an authority or expert in all aspects of African art, but you do have a group of passionate collectors, dealers and educators that have quite a few years of experience under their belts and try to be helpful to those who ask.
         
        Sorry if it seems like I am being harsh in my message, I understand your desire to sell the minkisi pair, but I didn't agree with how you represented them and I felt that it is most likely misleading to those collectors out there who don't know any better in their current stage of collecting.
         
        If you haven't read it before, I highly suggest you read the article:
        The Authenticity of African Sculptures by Henri Kamer
         
         
        RAND
         
         
         
         
         
         


        Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@...> wrote:
        Hi,

        I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is intact (but looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete). Please provide comments about the age/quality.
        Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of the group named : Junaid.
        Copy and paste this link:
        http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
        Thanks,
        Junaid

        PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more trustworthy (it seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he doesn't concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale. We'll see how that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).



      • Junaid Gamieldien
        Rand, I understand what you are saying and I think the biggest mistake I made is citing the age (i.e. the age that the dealer told me they were) and statements
        Message 3 of 11 , Jan 27, 2006
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          Rand,

          I understand what you are saying and I think the biggest mistake I made is citing the age (i.e. the age that the dealer told me they were) and statements about ritual use. As far as 'the story', I stated what I was told: "The explanation given to me was that this specific pair, which is rare, were made for the protection of a very important marriage, the chief and his wife in this instance."

          Its kind of a case of being between a rock and a hard place i.e. advertising something as 'fake' or not saying anything about the object(s) - in both cases would be worse than me actually burning the objects IMO - noone would even look at them and I would lose even more money just by listing them. That said, I have tried to edit the description in my eBay listing, but it is not allowed (I am new to the eBay thing). As a matter of fact, I think the biggest mistake I made was to follow some "How to sell on eBay" article when I prepared the auction description.

          So, while I couldn't remove the misleading statements, I have lowered the reserve to a figure that is far below what I purchased the figure for - less than most of the "Buy it now" prices of other reproductions in eBay stores. As I said before, I would burn them if I had an endless supply of money, but that is unfortunately not the case. I am not saying that someone else should pay for my errors in judgement, but if someone wants to buy something I want to sell ( without being misled - I take your comments to heart) then I am going to sell it to them.

          That said, I have found some carvings and a number of bronze figures that appear to be authentic based on the unbiased opinion of the owner (he is not the seller) of a brick and mortar African Art store here in Cape Town. But in truth, I don't like any of them. So, I decided to purchase some them with the intention of reselling as a means of creating enough capital for when that expensive piece that I really want comes along. Now, in hindsight, I am probably better off selling airport art that creates no misconceptions to do that - and negotiating harder with 'artifact dealers' for a moneyback guarantee so that I don't have to put questionable objects into the community (even those that I think are authentic).

          So, right now the only remedy I had for the specific problem you raise is to lower the reserve price of the 'minkisi pair' to a point where they are even cheap for reproductions.

          Point taken,
          Junaid

          PS. Thanks for the article

          On 1/28/06, Rand African Art <rand@...> wrote:
          Link to Junaid's Mahongwe photos:
           
          Junaid,
          Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow up to a question you recently asked the group...
           
          I see that you decided to offer for sale your Kongo minkisi figures you asked the group about. I also see that you make statements in your description about age, and also statements about ritualistic use and rarity despite what people in the group told you. The statements you made in your descriptions seemed pretty authoritative to me, but it is your decision how you want to represent them.
           
          I am just not a big believer in misrepresentation of things, intentional or unintentional. If someone is unsure about something, they should not make authoritative statements in my opinion. As I said about the Lobi figure Jan asked about, age shouldn't be the big determining factor about an object, it should be the quality of an object and how well it conforms to traditional style in my opinion.
           
          When I first started out learning about African art, I didn't know that items were made specifically to sell to collectors or specifically for the market, I thought everything was made for and used by the people they represented. I had believed statements about age and so on when I bought some of my first objects, only to learn later that I was probably misled. I didn't get upset, instead I used these experiences to learn from and I chalked them up to experience.
           
          I don't think that everyone out there has to collect only old and authentic objects, I feel that people should collect what they want. The thing I do think that people should do is be educated collectors and educated consumers for whatever it is they collect.
           
          The main purpose of this discussion group and also of my website is to educate. I am a pretty vocal person, but I also take to heart what people tell me because I am still learning every day. I get my fair share of constructive critisism, and I try to take it to heart and learn from it and incorporate it into what I say and what I do in here, and on my website.
           
          If someone asks me, and/or others our opinions about something, it is up to the person asking the question to interpet the answers they receive, we can not make or expect you to believe something simply because we tell it to you. The person asking can learn from the answers, or incorporate those answers into their own thoughts on the subject at hand and come up with their own conclusions, they can take them and do with them what they want. By no means is anyone in this group an authority or expert in all aspects of African art, but you do have a group of passionate collectors, dealers and educators that have quite a few years of experience under their belts and try to be helpful to those who ask.
           
          Sorry if it seems like I am being harsh in my message, I understand your desire to sell the minkisi pair, but I didn't agree with how you represented them and I felt that it is most likely misleading to those collectors out there who don't know any better in their current stage of collecting.
           
          If you haven't read it before, I highly suggest you read the article:
          The Authenticity of African Sculptures by Henri Kamer
           
           
          RAND
           
           
           
           
           
           


          Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@...> wrote:
          Hi,

          I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is intact (but looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete). Please provide comments about the age/quality.
          Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of the group named : Junaid.
          Copy and paste this link:
          http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
          Thanks,
          Junaid

          PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more trustworthy (it seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he doesn't concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale. We'll see how that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).





          SPONSORED LINKS
          Object Fine art Culture club
          Fine art poster Fine art reproductions Organizational culture


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          --
          Junaid Gamieldien, PhD
          Semantic Integration Technologies
          Ph: 083 6554564
          Fax: 021 9793603
        • craig lewis
          Junaid, I understand exactly what you are trying to do and say, however again with the Dan mask you have listed on e-bay you have made some very bold
          Message 4 of 11 , Jan 28, 2006
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            Junaid,
            I understand exactly what you are trying to do and say, however again with the Dan mask you have listed on e-bay you have made some very bold statements which in my opinion are not correct.
            I am not saying that you are being dishonest but it is dangerous to make such comments without the knowledge of really knowing if what you are saying is true or not.
              In my opinion the Dan mask is also a reproduction.(also at least one of the links you give for another example is also a reproduction. I will not comment further on which! ). The mask doesn't look quite right in style or quality to me and the back looks wrong too. I don't think I have seen any authentic Dan masks where the interior is stained as I believe yours is. 
            Your best option is to leave the "sales pitch" and just list your pieces with a description of size etc at least this way you cannot be accused of dishonesty. Also remember that "brick and mortar " shops can sell fakes and repros(there is one I know of in South Africa).
            I am not having a go at you because I really do not think you are intentionally being dishonest, I do however think it is foolish and dangerous to make statements on value and use of objects when there is still a lot to learn.
            With regards to your Mahongwe, I know nothing about them because they do not appeal to me at all, but I do know that fakes(and some very good ones) are all over the place. Hopefully someone with more knowledge in that field will be of more use.
            Cheers
            Craig   
             
            Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@...> wrote:
            Rand,

            I understand what you are saying and I think the biggest mistake I made is citing the age (i.e. the age that the dealer told me they were) and statements about ritual use. As far as 'the story', I stated what I was told: "The explanation given to me was that this specific pair, which is rare, were made for the protection of a very important marriage, the chief and his wife in this instance."

            Its kind of a case of being between a rock and a hard place i.e. advertising something as 'fake' or not saying anything about the object(s) - in both cases would be worse than me actually burning the objects IMO - noone would even look at them and I would lose even more money just by listing them. That said, I have tried to edit the description in my eBay listing, but it is not allowed (I am new to the eBay thing). As a matter of fact, I think the biggest mistake I made was to follow some "How to sell on eBay" article when I prepared the auction description.

            So, while I couldn't remove the misleading statements, I have lowered the reserve to a figure that is far below what I purchased the figure for - less than most of the "Buy it now" prices of other reproductions in eBay stores. As I said before, I would burn them if I had an endless supply of money, but that is unfortunately not the case. I am not saying that someone else should pay for my errors in judgement, but if someone wants to buy something I want to sell ( without being misled - I take your comments to heart) then I am going to sell it to them.

            That said, I have found some carvings and a number of bronze figures that appear to be authentic based on the unbiased opinion of the owner (he is not the seller) of a brick and mortar African Art store here in Cape Town. But in truth, I don't like any of them. So, I decided to purchase some them with the intention of reselling as a means of creating enough capital for when that expensive piece that I really want comes along. Now, in hindsight, I am probably better off selling airport art that creates no misconceptions to do that - and negotiating harder with 'artifact dealers' for a moneyback guarantee so that I don't have to put questionable objects into the community (even those that I think are authentic).

            So, right now the only remedy I had for the specific problem you raise is to lower the reserve price of the 'minkisi pair' to a point where they are even cheap for reproductions.

            Point taken,
            Junaid

            PS. Thanks for the article

            On 1/28/06, Rand African Art <rand@...> wrote:
            Link to Junaid's Mahongwe photos:
             
            Junaid,
            Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow up to a question you recently asked the group...
             
            I see that you decided to offer for sale your Kongo minkisi figures you asked the group about. I also see that you make statements in your description about age, and also statements about ritualistic use and rarity despite what people in the group told you. The statements you made in your descriptions seemed pretty authoritative to me, but it is your decision how you want to represent them.
             
            I am just not a big believer in misrepresentation of things, intentional or unintentional. If someone is unsure about something, they should not make authoritative statements in my opinion. As I said about the Lobi figure Jan asked about, age shouldn't be the big determining factor about an object, it should be the quality of an object and how well it conforms to traditional style in my opinion.
             
            When I first started out learning about African art, I didn't know that items were made specifically to sell to collectors or specifically for the market, I thought everything was made for and used by the people they represented. I had believed statements about age and so on when I bought some of my first objects, only to learn later that I was probably misled. I didn't get upset, instead I used these experiences to learn from and I chalked them up to experience.
             
            I don't think that everyone out there has to collect only old and authentic objects, I feel that people should collect what they want. The thing I do think that people should do is be educated collectors and educated consumers for whatever it is they collect.
             
            The main purpose of this discussion group and also of my website is to educate. I am a pretty vocal person, but I also take to heart what people tell me because I am still learning every day. I get my fair share of constructive critisism, and I try to take it to heart and learn from it and incorporate it into what I say and what I do in here, and on my website.
             
            If someone asks me, and/or others our opinions about something, it is up to the person asking the question to interpet the answers they receive, we can not make or expect you to believe something simply because we tell it to you. The person asking can learn from the answers, or incorporate those answers into their own thoughts on the subject at hand and come up with their own conclusions, they can take them and do with them what they want. By no means is anyone in this group an authority or expert in all aspects of African art, but you do have a group of passionate collectors, dealers and educators that have quite a few years of experience under their belts and try to be helpful to those who ask.
             
            Sorry if it seems like I am being harsh in my message, I understand your desire to sell the minkisi pair, but I didn't agree with how you represented them and I felt that it is most likely misleading to those collectors out there who don't know any better in their current stage of collecting.
             
            If you haven't read it before, I highly suggest you read the article:
            The Authenticity of African Sculptures by Henri Kamer
             
             
            RAND
             
             
             
             
             
             


            Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@...> wrote:
            Hi,

            I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is intact (but looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete). Please provide comments about the age/quality.
            Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of the group named : Junaid.
            Copy and paste this link:
            http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
            Thanks,
            Junaid

            PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more trustworthy (it seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he doesn't concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale. We'll see how that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).





            SPONSORED LINKS
            ObjectFine artCulture club
            Fine art posterFine art reproductionsOrganizational culture


            YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS






            --
            Junaid Gamieldien, PhD
            Semantic Integration Technologies
            Ph: 083 6554564
            Fax: 021 9793603


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          • LRubinstein@post.harvard.edu
            Junaid: The Mahongwe reliquaries -- like the Kongo power figures -- are plentiful and oft-reproduced; separating the authentic/ritual objects from the
            Message 5 of 11 , Jan 28, 2006
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              Junaid:
               
              The Mahongwe reliquaries -- like the Kongo power figures -- are plentiful and oft-reproduced;  separating the authentic/ritual objects from the commercial reproductions is a daunting task.  In part, this is so because many works are altered to satisfy market demand.  On one hand, pieces are aged to appeal to give that "ritually used" look, while authentic pieces are sometimes polished to provide a more striking visual impression, making them appear too new to be authentic.   So, the details of objects that provide critical clues in identifying and authenticating are often obscured by diverse motivations. 
               
              ... but there are materials that can help. There are specialized studies that look more deeply into the reliquary forms and traditions of the region that includes the Kota, the Mahongwe, the Sango as well as the related and/or analogous reliquary productions of the Fang and the Ambete.  Louis Perrois has written a number of relevant articles and books about cultures in Gabon and surrounding regions such as Southern Cameroon.  I believe you will also find some interesting sources by James W. Fernandez (on the Fang and bwiti) and Gerald Delorme  (http://www.randafricanart.com/Kota_study.html)
               
              There's a lot of migration and cross-migration and interaction among cultures in that region, so it is quite a complex and fascinating region to explore and requires much study and comparison to arrive at any strength of conviction in assessments regarding the "reality" of specific examples.  Just identifying the sub-group or regional style which figures represent or aim to represent involves the absorption and mastery of so many details.  The Delorme article above is an excellent starting point.
               
              In my earliest days of collecting, I purchased a couple of alleged Kota reliquary figures that were correct in form but -- as I learned later -- MUCH, MUCH TOO BIG TO BE ACTUAL;  for example, one of the figures is more than six feet tall!  That's when I learned not merely to look at illustrative images but also to look more closely at the dimensions!!!  You will see an image or two of them in some of the house photos on a page which Rand composed to host images for a discussion we were having with a group of collectors some time ago: 
              http://www.randafricanart.com/LEE.html  Be patient; it's a slow-loading page...
               
              Also included on this page are, as I mentioned, house photos from around my home as well as random selections that illustrated other topics we were discussing, so it is not a representative sampling or even a refined selection of objects.*  But it gives you an idea of the range and quality produced by collecting behavior that precedes depth of knowledge -- which is an infinite depth and never completed.  Having identified basic forms, it is sometimes difficult not to acquire affordable examples of objects that appear to be authentic so as to provide a direct, accessible form to provide tangible links to the forms studied.  Because the forms are initially so compelling  it is often tempting to assume too quickly that similarity indicates sameness on levels on which it does not.  It is a sensitivity to the nuances of difference that must be developed and which are subjective and thus never wholly certain.  But the processes of learning and refining one's perception and being able to draw upon elements of knowledge and visual clues to assess are richly rewarding. 
               
              Among the objects on that page are also some Sango reliquary baskets that are among works that I go back and forth on whether they are authentic.  They are consistent in size with published examples, show "signs of age" (?), appropriate stylistics... Unfortunately, I have not yet had adequate time and impulse to focus on this particular class of objects. 
               
              As I recommend with every class of objects...see as many as you can.  Withhold judgment and keep your mind as open as you can to varied possibilities.  (Too many X Files?)  There are variations of these particular forms within related sub-groups and chronological factors as well.  Many accessible identifications are based on preliminary or cursory research and do not reveal full detail.  Even this brief excerpt reveals how much ethnographic and/or stylistic detail must be searched to determine an object's "identity" and origins:
               
              Lee
               
              *PS  I will be exhibiting some of the highlights from my collection in a gallery space in Lambertville, NJ in February (and perhaps into March???)  I will provide more detail shortly.  Here are the basics:  http://www.leoafricanus.net/Exhibition.html
            • Junaid Gamieldien
              Craig, Thanks for your comments. I did in fact edit my listing as soon as I could based on Rand s comments and then even further based on yours - all comments
              Message 6 of 11 , Jan 28, 2006
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                Craig,

                Thanks for your comments. I did in fact edit my listing as soon as I could based on Rand's comments and then even further based on yours - all comments about age and ritual-use are now gone.

                Lee,

                Thanks for all your comments and the generous amounts of information. I have to admit, I bought this particular piece because I liked the way it looked - my wife hates it though (creeps her out). Strangely, it was the only piece that the dealer (an informal fleamarket trader) didn't claim was "very very old" and he also refused to guess an age. As far as them being plentiful, I just saw another one today which *looked* much older than mine and the wood at the base was rotten and looked like it was stuck in earth for a long time. The trader refused to let me take a photo saying that he was afraid that someone would "come and steal it". Nevertheless, I didn't even consider buying it because my wife would definitely not allow another "creepy statue" that is double the size of the existing one, into the house :)

                Regards,
                Junaid


                On 1/28/06, LRubinstein@... <LRubinstein@... > wrote:
                Junaid:
                 
                The Mahongwe reliquaries -- like the Kongo power figures -- are plentiful and oft-reproduced;  separating the authentic/ritual objects from the commercial reproductions is a daunting task.  In part, this is so because many works are altered to satisfy market demand.  On one hand, pieces are aged to appeal to give that "ritually used" look, while authentic pieces are sometimes polished to provide a more striking visual impression, making them appear too new to be authentic.   So, the details of objects that provide critical clues in identifying and authenticating are often obscured by diverse motivations. 
                 
                ... but there are materials that can help. There are specialized studies that look more deeply into the reliquary forms and traditions of the region that includes the Kota, the Mahongwe, the Sango as well as the related and/or analogous reliquary productions of the Fang and the Ambete.  Louis Perrois has written a number of relevant articles and books about cultures in Gabon and surrounding regions such as Southern Cameroon.  I believe you will also find some interesting sources by James W. Fernandez (on the Fang and bwiti) and Gerald Delorme  (http://www.randafricanart.com/Kota_study.html)
                 
                There's a lot of migration and cross-migration and interaction among cultures in that region, so it is quite a complex and fascinating region to explore and requires much study and comparison to arrive at any strength of conviction in assessments regarding the "reality" of specific examples.  Just identifying the sub-group or regional style which figures represent or aim to represent involves the absorption and mastery of so many details.  The Delorme article above is an excellent starting point.
                 
                In my earliest days of collecting, I purchased a couple of alleged Kota reliquary figures that were correct in form but -- as I learned later -- MUCH, MUCH TOO BIG TO BE ACTUAL;  for example, one of the figures is more than six feet tall!  That's when I learned not merely to look at illustrative images but also to look more closely at the dimensions!!!  You will see an image or two of them in some of the house photos on a page which Rand composed to host images for a discussion we were having with a group of collectors some time ago: 
                http://www.randafricanart.com/LEE.html  Be patient; it's a slow-loading page...
                 
                Also included on this page are, as I mentioned, house photos from around my home as well as random selections that illustrated other topics we were discussing, so it is not a representative sampling or even a refined selection of objects.*  But it gives you an idea of the range and quality produced by collecting behavior that precedes depth of knowledge -- which is an infinite depth and never completed.  Having identified basic forms, it is sometimes difficult not to acquire affordable examples of objects that appear to be authentic so as to provide a direct, accessible form to provide tangible links to the forms studied.  Because the forms are initially so compelling  it is often tempting to assume too quickly that similarity indicates sameness on levels on which it does not.  It is a sensitivity to the nuances of difference that must be developed and which are subjective and thus never wholly certain.  But the processes of learning and refining one's perception and being able to draw upon elements of knowledge and visual clues to assess are richly rewarding. 
                 
                Among the objects on that page are also some Sango reliquary baskets that are among works that I go back and forth on whether they are authentic.  They are consistent in size with published examples, show "signs of age" (?), appropriate stylistics... Unfortunately, I have not yet had adequate time and impulse to focus on this particular class of objects. 
                 
                As I recommend with every class of objects...see as many as you can.  Withhold judgment and keep your mind as open as you can to varied possibilities.  (Too many X Files?)  There are variations of these particular forms within related sub-groups and chronological factors as well.  Many accessible identifications are based on preliminary or cursory research and do not reveal full detail.  Even this brief excerpt reveals how much ethnographic and/or stylistic detail must be searched to determine an object's "identity" and origins:
                 
                Lee
                 
                *PS  I will be exhibiting some of the highlights from my collection in a gallery space in Lambertville, NJ in February (and perhaps into March???)  I will provide more detail shortly.  Here are the basics:  http://www.leoafricanus.net/Exhibition.html


                YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS






                --
                Junaid Gamieldien, PhD
                Semantic Integration Technologies
                Ph: 083 6554564
                Fax: 021 9793603
              • Steve Price
                HiJunaid Another alternative is to end the eBay auction, then relist the items with accurate descriptions. That would cost a few dollars in fees you pay to
                Message 7 of 11 , Jan 28, 2006
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                  HiJunaid

                  Another alternative is to end the eBay auction, then relist the items
                  with accurate descriptions. That would cost a few dollars in fees
                  you pay to eBay, but would return you to a state of ethical
                  cleanliness. Whether the cost/benefit ratio of doing this is
                  acceptable to you is, of course, a decision that only you can make.

                  Steve Price

                  --- In African_Arts@yahoogroups.com, Junaid Gamieldien
                  <junaid.gamieldien@g...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Rand,
                  >
                  > I understand what you are saying and I think the biggest mistake I
                  made is
                  > citing the age (i.e. the age that the dealer told me they were) and
                  > statements about ritual use. As far as 'the story', I stated what I
                  was
                  > told: "The explanation given to me was that this specific pair,
                  which is
                  > rare, were made for the protection of a very important marriage,
                  the chief
                  > and his wife in this instance."
                  >
                  > Its kind of a case of being between a rock and a hard place i.e.
                  advertising
                  > something as 'fake' or not saying anything about the object(s) - in
                  both
                  > cases would be worse than me actually burning the objects IMO -
                  noone would
                  > even look at them and I would lose even more money just by listing
                  them.
                  > That said, I have tried to edit the description in my eBay listing,
                  but it
                  > is not allowed (I am new to the eBay thing). As a matter of fact, I
                  think
                  > the biggest mistake I made was to follow some "How to sell on eBay"
                  article
                  > when I prepared the auction description.
                  >
                  > So, while I couldn't remove the misleading statements, I have
                  lowered the
                  > reserve to a figure that is far below what I purchased the figure
                  for - less
                  > than most of the "Buy it now" prices of other reproductions in eBay
                  stores.
                  > As I said before, I would burn them if I had an endless supply of
                  money, but
                  > that is unfortunately not the case. I am not saying that someone
                  else should
                  > pay for my errors in judgement, but if someone wants to buy
                  something I want
                  > to sell (without being misled - I take your comments to heart) then
                  I am
                  > going to sell it to them.
                  >
                  > That said, I have found some carvings and a number of bronze
                  figures that
                  > appear to be authentic based on the unbiased opinion of the owner
                  (he is not
                  > the seller) of a brick and mortar African Art store here in Cape
                  Town. But
                  > in truth, I don't like any of them. So, I decided to purchase some
                  them with
                  > the intention of reselling as a means of creating enough capital
                  for when
                  > that expensive piece that I really want comes along. Now, in
                  hindsight, I am
                  > probably better off selling airport art that creates no
                  misconceptions to do
                  > that - and negotiating harder with 'artifact dealers' for a
                  moneyback
                  > guarantee so that I don't have to put questionable objects into the
                  > community (even those that I think are authentic).
                  >
                  > So, right now the only remedy I had for the specific problem you
                  raise is to
                  > lower the reserve price of the 'minkisi pair' to a point where they
                  are even
                  > cheap for reproductions.
                  >
                  > Point taken,
                  > Junaid
                  >
                  > PS. Thanks for the article
                  >
                  > On 1/28/06, Rand African Art <rand@r...> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > Link to Junaid's Mahongwe photos:
                  > > http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
                  > >
                  > > Junaid,
                  > > Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow up to a
                  question you
                  > > recently asked the group...
                  > >
                  > > I see that you decided to offer for sale your Kongo minkisi
                  figures you
                  > > asked the group about. I also see that you make statements in your
                  > > description about age, and also statements about ritualistic use
                  and rarity
                  > > despite what people in the group told you. The statements you
                  made in your
                  > > descriptions seemed pretty authoritative to me, but it is your
                  decision how
                  > > you want to represent them.
                  > >
                  > > I am just not a big believer in misrepresentation of things,
                  intentional
                  > > or unintentional. If someone is unsure about something, they
                  should not make
                  > > authoritative statements in my opinion. As I said about the Lobi
                  figure Jan
                  > > asked about, age shouldn't be the big determining factor about an
                  object, it
                  > > should be the quality of an object and how well it conforms to
                  traditional
                  > > style in my opinion.
                  > >
                  > > When I first started out learning about African art, I didn't
                  know that
                  > > items were made specifically to sell to collectors or
                  specifically for the
                  > > market, I thought everything was made for and used by the people
                  they
                  > > represented. I had believed statements about age and so on when I
                  bought
                  > > some of my first objects, only to learn later that I was probably
                  misled. I
                  > > didn't get upset, instead I used these experiences to learn from
                  and I
                  > > chalked them up to experience.
                  > >
                  > > I don't think that everyone out there has to collect only old and
                  > > authentic objects, I feel that people should collect what they
                  want. The
                  > > thing I do think that people should do is be educated collectors
                  and
                  > > educated consumers for whatever it is they collect.
                  > >
                  > > The main purpose of this discussion group and also of my website
                  is to
                  > > educate. I am a pretty vocal person, but I also take to heart
                  what people
                  > > tell me because I am still learning every day. I get my fair
                  share of
                  > > constructive critisism, and I try to take it to heart and learn
                  from it and
                  > > incorporate it into what I say and what I do in here, and on my
                  website.
                  > >
                  > > If someone asks me, and/or others our opinions about something,
                  it is up
                  > > to the person asking the question to interpet the answers they
                  receive, we
                  > > can not make or expect you to believe something simply because we
                  tell it to
                  > > you. The person asking can learn from the answers, or incorporate
                  those
                  > > answers into their own thoughts on the subject at hand and come
                  up with
                  > > their own conclusions, they can take them and do with them what
                  they want.
                  > > By no means is anyone in this group an authority or expert in all
                  aspects of
                  > > African art, but you do have a group of passionate collectors,
                  dealers and
                  > > educators that have quite a few years of experience under their
                  belts and
                  > > try to be helpful to those who ask.
                  > >
                  > > Sorry if it seems like I am being harsh in my message, I
                  understand your
                  > > desire to sell the minkisi pair, but I didn't agree with how you
                  represented
                  > > them and I felt that it is most likely misleading to those
                  collectors out
                  > > there who don't know any better in their current stage of
                  collecting.
                  > >
                  > > If you haven't read it before, I highly suggest you read the
                  article:
                  > > The Authenticity of African Sculptures by Henri Kamer
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  http://www.randafricanart.com/Authenticity_of_African_Sculptures_Henri
                  _Kamer.html
                  > >
                  > > RAND
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > *Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@g...>* wrote:
                  > >
                  > > Hi,
                  > >
                  > > I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is
                  intact (but
                  > > looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete).
                  Please provide
                  > > comments about the age/quality.
                  > > Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of the
                  group
                  > > named : Junaid.
                  > > Copy and paste this link:
                  > > http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
                  > > Thanks,
                  > > Junaid
                  > >
                  > > PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more
                  trustworthy (it
                  > > seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he
                  doesn't
                  > > concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale.
                  We'll see how
                  > > that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > SPONSORED LINKS
                  > > Object<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                  t=ms&k=Object&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+poster
                  &w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=Zz
                  UgBByTBi9sZHN01658Yg> Fine
                  > > art<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                  t=ms&k=Fine+art&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+post
                  er&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=
                  19jTSHlfX1w1j24-8YLwOw> Culture
                  > > club<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                  t=ms&k=Culture+club&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+
                  poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.
                  sig=ZDFWd6CZLOHX_WjnfwoRJw> Fine
                  > > art poster<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                  t=ms&k=Fine+art+poster&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+a
                  rt+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=12
                  1&.sig=Y2DPRA31FvoMirazkz9B4g> Fine
                  > > art reproductions<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                  t=ms&k=Fine+art+reproductions&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                  =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                  =6&s=121&.sig=QgBJzRcF45mmdeThQyoN5A> Organizational
                  > > culture<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                  t=ms&k=Organizational+culture&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                  =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                  =6&s=121&.sig=I75Rij1DmCGX7kyzTKlU5g>
                  > > ------------------------------
                  > > YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > - Visit your
                  group "African_Arts<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts>"
                  > > on the web.
                  > >
                  > > - To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                  > > African_Arts-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com<African_Arts-
                  unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com?subject=Unsubscribe>
                  > >
                  > > - Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of
                  > > Service <http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/>.
                  > >
                  > >
                  > > ------------------------------
                  > >
                  >
                  >
                  >
                  > --
                  > Junaid Gamieldien, PhD
                  > Semantic Integration Technologies
                  > Ph: 083 6554564
                  > Fax: 021 9793603
                  >
                • John Nash
                  Lee, You mention some specialized studies relating to the Kota. I seem to remember seeing some time ago on either this list, or maybe AfricanAntiques, the
                  Message 8 of 11 , Jan 28, 2006
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Lee,
                     
                    You mention some specialized studies relating to the Kota. I seem to remember seeing some time ago on either this list, or maybe AfricanAntiques, the announcement of someone who was compiling a database of a certain type of figures that were held in collections throughout the world. And I think it may have been Kota figures. Does this ring a bell to you? and would you know the current status of that project?
                     
                    Cheers,
                    John

                    LRubinstein@... wrote:
                    ... but there are materials that can help. There are specialized studies that look more deeply into the reliquary forms and traditions of the region that includes the Kota, the Mahongwe, the Sango as well as the related and/or analogous reliquary productions of the Fang and the Ambete. 
                  • Junaid Gamieldien
                    Hi Steve, Thanks for that tip. Its a moot point right now, the auction is all but over and the items will probably not sell - which, I have to admit is a
                    Message 9 of 11 , Jan 28, 2006
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Hi Steve,

                      Thanks for that tip. Its a moot point right now, the auction is all but over and the items will probably not sell - which, I have to admit is a relief for me. My other listings are OK as is - I stated off the bat in one listing that the items one are *not*  ritual artifacts, so the that's always been OK. As for the Dan-inspired mask, all 'bold statements' have been removed.

                      Regards,
                      Junaid

                      On 1/28/06, Steve Price <sprice@...> wrote:
                      HiJunaid

                      Another alternative is to end the eBay auction, then relist the items
                      with accurate descriptions.  That would cost a few dollars in fees
                      you pay to eBay, but would return you to a state of ethical
                      cleanliness.  Whether the cost/benefit ratio of doing this is
                      acceptable to you is, of course, a decision that only you can make.

                      Steve Price

                      --- In African_Arts@yahoogroups.com, Junaid Gamieldien

                      <junaid.gamieldien@g...> wrote:
                      >
                      > Rand,
                      >
                      > I understand what you are saying and I think the biggest mistake I
                      made is
                      > citing the age (i.e. the age that the dealer told me they were) and
                      > statements about ritual use. As far as 'the story', I stated what I
                      was
                      > told: "The explanation given to me was that this specific pair,
                      which is
                      > rare, were made for the protection of a very important marriage,
                      the chief
                      > and his wife in this instance."
                      >
                      > Its kind of a case of being between a rock and a hard place i.e.
                      advertising
                      > something as 'fake' or not saying anything about the object(s) - in
                      both
                      > cases would be worse than me actually burning the objects IMO -
                      noone would
                      > even look at them and I would lose even more money just by listing
                      them.
                      > That said, I have tried to edit the description in my eBay listing,
                      but it
                      > is not allowed (I am new to the eBay thing). As a matter of fact, I
                      think
                      > the biggest mistake I made was to follow some "How to sell on eBay"
                      article
                      > when I prepared the auction description.
                      >
                      > So, while I couldn't remove the misleading statements, I have
                      lowered the
                      > reserve to a figure that is far below what I purchased the figure
                      for - less
                      > than most of the "Buy it now" prices of other reproductions in eBay
                      stores.
                      > As I said before, I would burn them if I had an endless supply of
                      money, but
                      > that is unfortunately not the case. I am not saying that someone
                      else should
                      > pay for my errors in judgement, but if someone wants to buy
                      something I want
                      > to sell (without being misled - I take your comments to heart) then
                      I am
                      > going to sell it to them.
                      >
                      > That said, I have found some carvings and a number of bronze
                      figures that
                      > appear to be authentic based on the unbiased opinion of the owner
                      (he is not
                      > the seller) of a brick and mortar African Art store here in Cape
                      Town. But
                      > in truth, I don't like any of them. So, I decided to purchase some
                      them with
                      > the intention of reselling as a means of creating enough capital
                      for when
                      > that expensive piece that I really want comes along. Now, in
                      hindsight, I am
                      > probably better off selling airport art that creates no
                      misconceptions to do
                      > that - and negotiating harder with 'artifact dealers' for a
                      moneyback
                      > guarantee so that I don't have to put questionable objects into the
                      > community (even those that I think are authentic).
                      >
                      > So, right now the only remedy I had for the specific problem you
                      raise is to
                      > lower the reserve price of the 'minkisi pair' to a point where they
                      are even
                      > cheap for reproductions.
                      >
                      > Point taken,
                      > Junaid
                      >
                      > PS. Thanks for the article
                      >
                      > On 1/28/06, Rand African Art <rand@r...> wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Link to Junaid's Mahongwe photos:
                      > > http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
                      > >
                      > > Junaid,
                      > > Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow up to a
                      question you
                      > > recently asked the group...
                      > >
                      > > I see that you decided to offer for sale your Kongo minkisi
                      figures you
                      > > asked the group about. I also see that you make statements in your
                      > > description about age, and also statements about ritualistic use
                      and rarity
                      > > despite what people in the group told you. The statements you
                      made in your
                      > > descriptions seemed pretty authoritative to me, but it is your
                      decision how
                      > > you want to represent them.
                      > >
                      > > I am just not a big believer in misrepresentation of things,
                      intentional
                      > > or unintentional. If someone is unsure about something, they
                      should not make
                      > > authoritative statements in my opinion. As I said about the Lobi
                      figure Jan
                      > > asked about, age shouldn't be the big determining factor about an
                      object, it
                      > > should be the quality of an object and how well it conforms to
                      traditional
                      > > style in my opinion.
                      > >
                      > > When I first started out learning about African art, I didn't
                      know that
                      > > items were made specifically to sell to collectors or
                      specifically for the
                      > > market, I thought everything was made for and used by the people
                      they
                      > > represented. I had believed statements about age and so on when I
                      bought
                      > > some of my first objects, only to learn later that I was probably
                      misled. I
                      > > didn't get upset, instead I used these experiences to learn from
                      and I
                      > > chalked them up to experience.
                      > >
                      > > I don't think that everyone out there has to collect only old and
                      > > authentic objects, I feel that people should collect what they
                      want. The
                      > > thing I do think that people should do is be educated collectors
                      and
                      > > educated consumers for whatever it is they collect.
                      > >
                      > > The main purpose of this discussion group and also of my website
                      is to
                      > > educate. I am a pretty vocal person, but I also take to heart
                      what people
                      > > tell me because I am still learning every day. I get my fair
                      share of
                      > > constructive critisism, and I try to take it to heart and learn
                      from it and
                      > > incorporate it into what I say and what I do in here, and on my
                      website.
                      > >
                      > > If someone asks me, and/or others our opinions about something,
                      it is up
                      > > to the person asking the question to interpet the answers they
                      receive, we
                      > > can not make or expect you to believe something simply because we
                      tell it to
                      > > you. The person asking can learn from the answers, or incorporate
                      those
                      > > answers into their own thoughts on the subject at hand and come
                      up with
                      > > their own conclusions, they can take them and do with them what
                      they want.
                      > > By no means is anyone in this group an authority or expert in all
                      aspects of
                      > > African art, but you do have a group of passionate collectors,
                      dealers and
                      > > educators that have quite a few years of experience under their
                      belts and
                      > > try to be helpful to those who ask.
                      > >
                      > > Sorry if it seems like I am being harsh in my message, I
                      understand your
                      > > desire to sell the minkisi pair, but I didn't agree with how you
                      represented
                      > > them and I felt that it is most likely misleading to those
                      collectors out
                      > > there who don't know any better in their current stage of
                      collecting.
                      > >
                      > > If you haven't read it before, I highly suggest you read the
                      article:
                      > > The Authenticity of African Sculptures by Henri Kamer
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      http://www.randafricanart.com/Authenticity_of_African_Sculptures_Henri
                      _Kamer.html
                      > >
                      > > RAND
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > > *Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@g...>* wrote:
                      > >
                      > > Hi,
                      > >
                      > > I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is
                      intact (but
                      > > looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete).
                      Please provide
                      > > comments about the age/quality.
                      > > Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of the
                      group
                      > > named : Junaid.
                      > > Copy and paste this link:
                      > > http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
                      > > Thanks,
                      > > Junaid
                      > >
                      > > PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more
                      trustworthy (it
                      > > seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he
                      doesn't
                      > > concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale.
                      We'll see how
                      > > that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >  SPONSORED LINKS
                      > >   Object<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                      t=ms&k=Object&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+poster
                      &w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=Zz
                      UgBByTBi9sZHN01658Yg>  Fine
                      > > art<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                      t=ms&k=Fine+art&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+post
                      er&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=
                      19jTSHlfX1w1j24-8YLwOw>  Culture
                      > > club<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                      t=ms&k=Culture+club&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+
                      poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.
                      sig=ZDFWd6CZLOHX_WjnfwoRJw>   Fine
                      > > art poster<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                      t=ms&k=Fine+art+poster&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+a
                      rt+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=12
                      1&.sig=Y2DPRA31FvoMirazkz9B4g>  Fine
                      > > art reproductions<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                      t=ms&k=Fine+art+reproductions&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                      =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                      =6&s=121&.sig=QgBJzRcF45mmdeThQyoN5A>  Organizational
                      > > culture<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                      t=ms&k=Organizational+culture&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                      =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                      =6&s=121&.sig=I75Rij1DmCGX7kyzTKlU5g>
                      > >  ------------------------------
                      > > YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >    -  Visit your
                      group "African_Arts<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts>"
                      > >    on the web.
                      > >
                      > >    -  To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                      > >     African_Arts-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com<African_Arts-
                      unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com?subject=Unsubscribe>
                      > >
                      > >    -  Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of
                      > >    Service <http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/>.
                      > >
                      > >
                      > >  ------------------------------
                      > >
                      >
                      >
                      >
                      > --
                      > Junaid Gamieldien, PhD
                      > Semantic Integration Technologies
                      > Ph: 083 6554564
                      > Fax: 021 9793603
                      >








                      SPONSORED LINKS
                      Object Fine art Culture club
                      Fine art poster Fine art reproductions Organizational culture


                      YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS





                    • Craig Lewis
                      Hi Junaid, I m glad that you have changed your descriptions, it s more than a lot of people would do! However you do say As for the Dan-inspired mask, all
                      Message 10 of 11 , Jan 29, 2006
                      • 0 Attachment
                        Hi Junaid,
                        I'm glad that you have changed your descriptions, it's more than a
                        lot of people would do!
                        However you do say " As for the Dan-inspired mask, all 'bold
                        statements' have been removed." I wouldn't quite agree with you on
                        that one because your description for the Dan style mask still
                        includes "estimated value $2000-$4000" I personally think this is a
                        VERY bold statement!! :-)
                        Cheers and good luck!
                        Craig

                        --- In African_Arts@yahoogroups.com, Junaid Gamieldien
                        <junaid.gamieldien@g...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Hi Steve,
                        >
                        > Thanks for that tip. Its a moot point right now, the auction is all
                        but over
                        > and the items will probably not sell - which, I have to admit is a
                        relief
                        > for me. My other listings are OK as is - I stated off the bat in
                        one listing
                        > that the items one are *not* ritual artifacts, so the that's
                        always been
                        > OK. As for the Dan-inspired mask, all 'bold statements' have been
                        removed.
                        >
                        > Regards,
                        > Junaid
                        >
                        > On 1/28/06, Steve Price <sprice@h...> wrote:
                        > >
                        > > HiJunaid
                        > >
                        > > Another alternative is to end the eBay auction, then relist the
                        items
                        > > with accurate descriptions. That would cost a few dollars in fees
                        > > you pay to eBay, but would return you to a state of ethical
                        > > cleanliness. Whether the cost/benefit ratio of doing this is
                        > > acceptable to you is, of course, a decision that only you can
                        make.
                        > >
                        > > Steve Price
                        > >
                        > > --- In African_Arts@yahoogroups.com, Junaid Gamieldien
                        > > <junaid.gamieldien@g...> wrote:
                        > > >
                        > > > Rand,
                        > > >
                        > > > I understand what you are saying and I think the biggest
                        mistake I
                        > > made is
                        > > > citing the age (i.e. the age that the dealer told me they were)
                        and
                        > > > statements about ritual use. As far as 'the story', I stated
                        what I
                        > > was
                        > > > told: "The explanation given to me was that this specific pair,
                        > > which is
                        > > > rare, were made for the protection of a very important marriage,
                        > > the chief
                        > > > and his wife in this instance."
                        > > >
                        > > > Its kind of a case of being between a rock and a hard place i.e.
                        > > advertising
                        > > > something as 'fake' or not saying anything about the object(s) -
                        in
                        > > both
                        > > > cases would be worse than me actually burning the objects IMO -
                        > > noone would
                        > > > even look at them and I would lose even more money just by
                        listing
                        > > them.
                        > > > That said, I have tried to edit the description in my eBay
                        listing,
                        > > but it
                        > > > is not allowed (I am new to the eBay thing). As a matter of
                        fact, I
                        > > think
                        > > > the biggest mistake I made was to follow some "How to sell on
                        eBay"
                        > > article
                        > > > when I prepared the auction description.
                        > > >
                        > > > So, while I couldn't remove the misleading statements, I have
                        > > lowered the
                        > > > reserve to a figure that is far below what I purchased the
                        figure
                        > > for - less
                        > > > than most of the "Buy it now" prices of other reproductions in
                        eBay
                        > > stores.
                        > > > As I said before, I would burn them if I had an endless supply
                        of
                        > > money, but
                        > > > that is unfortunately not the case. I am not saying that someone
                        > > else should
                        > > > pay for my errors in judgement, but if someone wants to buy
                        > > something I want
                        > > > to sell (without being misled - I take your comments to heart)
                        then
                        > > I am
                        > > > going to sell it to them.
                        > > >
                        > > > That said, I have found some carvings and a number of bronze
                        > > figures that
                        > > > appear to be authentic based on the unbiased opinion of the
                        owner
                        > > (he is not
                        > > > the seller) of a brick and mortar African Art store here in Cape
                        > > Town. But
                        > > > in truth, I don't like any of them. So, I decided to purchase
                        some
                        > > them with
                        > > > the intention of reselling as a means of creating enough capital
                        > > for when
                        > > > that expensive piece that I really want comes along. Now, in
                        > > hindsight, I am
                        > > > probably better off selling airport art that creates no
                        > > misconceptions to do
                        > > > that - and negotiating harder with 'artifact dealers' for a
                        > > moneyback
                        > > > guarantee so that I don't have to put questionable objects into
                        the
                        > > > community (even those that I think are authentic).
                        > > >
                        > > > So, right now the only remedy I had for the specific problem you
                        > > raise is to
                        > > > lower the reserve price of the 'minkisi pair' to a point where
                        they
                        > > are even
                        > > > cheap for reproductions.
                        > > >
                        > > > Point taken,
                        > > > Junaid
                        > > >
                        > > > PS. Thanks for the article
                        > > >
                        > > > On 1/28/06, Rand African Art <rand@r...> wrote:
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Link to Junaid's Mahongwe photos:
                        > > > >
                        http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Junaid,
                        > > > > Not related to your Mahongwe figures, but a follow up to a
                        > > question you
                        > > > > recently asked the group...
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I see that you decided to offer for sale your Kongo minkisi
                        > > figures you
                        > > > > asked the group about. I also see that you make statements in
                        your
                        > > > > description about age, and also statements about ritualistic
                        use
                        > > and rarity
                        > > > > despite what people in the group told you. The statements you
                        > > made in your
                        > > > > descriptions seemed pretty authoritative to me, but it is your
                        > > decision how
                        > > > > you want to represent them.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I am just not a big believer in misrepresentation of things,
                        > > intentional
                        > > > > or unintentional. If someone is unsure about something, they
                        > > should not make
                        > > > > authoritative statements in my opinion. As I said about the
                        Lobi
                        > > figure Jan
                        > > > > asked about, age shouldn't be the big determining factor
                        about an
                        > > object, it
                        > > > > should be the quality of an object and how well it conforms to
                        > > traditional
                        > > > > style in my opinion.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > When I first started out learning about African art, I didn't
                        > > know that
                        > > > > items were made specifically to sell to collectors or
                        > > specifically for the
                        > > > > market, I thought everything was made for and used by the
                        people
                        > > they
                        > > > > represented. I had believed statements about age and so on
                        when I
                        > > bought
                        > > > > some of my first objects, only to learn later that I was
                        probably
                        > > misled. I
                        > > > > didn't get upset, instead I used these experiences to learn
                        from
                        > > and I
                        > > > > chalked them up to experience.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I don't think that everyone out there has to collect only old
                        and
                        > > > > authentic objects, I feel that people should collect what they
                        > > want. The
                        > > > > thing I do think that people should do is be educated
                        collectors
                        > > and
                        > > > > educated consumers for whatever it is they collect.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > The main purpose of this discussion group and also of my
                        website
                        > > is to
                        > > > > educate. I am a pretty vocal person, but I also take to heart
                        > > what people
                        > > > > tell me because I am still learning every day. I get my fair
                        > > share of
                        > > > > constructive critisism, and I try to take it to heart and
                        learn
                        > > from it and
                        > > > > incorporate it into what I say and what I do in here, and on
                        my
                        > > website.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > If someone asks me, and/or others our opinions about
                        something,
                        > > it is up
                        > > > > to the person asking the question to interpet the answers they
                        > > receive, we
                        > > > > can not make or expect you to believe something simply
                        because we
                        > > tell it to
                        > > > > you. The person asking can learn from the answers, or
                        incorporate
                        > > those
                        > > > > answers into their own thoughts on the subject at hand and
                        come
                        > > up with
                        > > > > their own conclusions, they can take them and do with them
                        what
                        > > they want.
                        > > > > By no means is anyone in this group an authority or expert in
                        all
                        > > aspects of
                        > > > > African art, but you do have a group of passionate collectors,
                        > > dealers and
                        > > > > educators that have quite a few years of experience under
                        their
                        > > belts and
                        > > > > try to be helpful to those who ask.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Sorry if it seems like I am being harsh in my message, I
                        > > understand your
                        > > > > desire to sell the minkisi pair, but I didn't agree with how
                        you
                        > > represented
                        > > > > them and I felt that it is most likely misleading to those
                        > > collectors out
                        > > > > there who don't know any better in their current stage of
                        > > collecting.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > If you haven't read it before, I highly suggest you read the
                        > > article:
                        > > > > The Authenticity of African Sculptures by Henri Kamer
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > >
                        http://www.randafricanart.com/Authenticity_of_African_Sculptures_Henri
                        > > _Kamer.html
                        > > > >
                        > > > > RAND
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > *Junaid Gamieldien <junaid.gamieldien@g...>* wrote:
                        > > > >
                        > > > > Hi,
                        > > > >
                        > > > > I have just acquired this Mahongwe guardian figure, which is
                        > > intact (but
                        > > > > looks old-ish) and is still in its reliquary basket (bwete).
                        > > Please provide
                        > > > > comments about the age/quality.
                        > > > > Photos have been placed in a folder in the PHOTOS section of
                        the
                        > > group
                        > > > > named : Junaid.
                        > > > > Copy and paste this link:
                        > > > >
                        http://ph.groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts/photos/browse/29c0
                        > > > > Thanks,
                        > > > > Junaid
                        > > > >
                        > > > > PS. I have taken the groups advice and have found a more
                        > > trustworthy (it
                        > > > > seems) individual to deal with here in Cape Town. At least he
                        > > doesn't
                        > > > > concoct any stories and does not really try to make the sale.
                        > > We'll see how
                        > > > > that works out (feedback from the group will help decide).
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > SPONSORED LINKS
                        > > > > Object<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        > >
                        t=ms&k=Object&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+poster
                        > >
                        &w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=Zz
                        > > UgBByTBi9sZHN01658Yg> Fine
                        > > > > art<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        > >
                        t=ms&k=Fine+art&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+post
                        > >
                        er&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=
                        > > 19jTSHlfX1w1j24-8YLwOw> Culture
                        > > > > club<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        > >
                        t=ms&k=Culture+club&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+
                        > >
                        poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.
                        > > sig=ZDFWd6CZLOHX_WjnfwoRJw> Fine
                        > > > > art poster<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        > >
                        t=ms&k=Fine+art+poster&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+a
                        > >
                        rt+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=12
                        > > 1&.sig=Y2DPRA31FvoMirazkz9B4g> Fine
                        > > > > art reproductions<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        > >
                        t=ms&k=Fine+art+reproductions&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                        > >
                        =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                        > > =6&s=121&.sig=QgBJzRcF45mmdeThQyoN5A> Organizational
                        > > > > culture<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        > >
                        t=ms&k=Organizational+culture&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                        > >
                        =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                        > > =6&s=121&.sig=I75Rij1DmCGX7kyzTKlU5g>
                        > > > > ------------------------------
                        > > > > YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > - Visit your
                        > > group "African_Arts<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts>"
                        > > > > on the web.
                        > > > >
                        > > > > - To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                        > > > > African_Arts-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com<African_Arts-
                        > > unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com?subject=Unsubscribe>
                        > > > >
                        > > > > - Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo!
                        Terms of
                        > > > > Service <http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/>.
                        > > > >
                        > > > >
                        > > > > ------------------------------
                        > > > >
                        > > >
                        > > >
                        > > >
                        > > > --
                        > > > Junaid Gamieldien, PhD
                        > > > Semantic Integration Technologies
                        > > > Ph: 083 6554564
                        > > > Fax: 021 9793603
                        > > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > SPONSORED LINKS
                        > > Object<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        t=ms&k=Object&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+poster
                        &w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=Zz
                        UgBByTBi9sZHN01658Yg> Fine
                        > > art<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        t=ms&k=Fine+art&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+post
                        er&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.sig=
                        19jTSHlfX1w1j24-8YLwOw> Culture
                        > > club<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        t=ms&k=Culture+club&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+art+
                        poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=121&.
                        sig=ZDFWd6CZLOHX_WjnfwoRJw> Fine
                        > > art poster<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        t=ms&k=Fine+art+poster&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4=Fine+a
                        rt+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c=6&s=12
                        1&.sig=Y2DPRA31FvoMirazkz9B4g> Fine
                        > > art reproductions<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        t=ms&k=Fine+art+reproductions&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                        =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                        =6&s=121&.sig=QgBJzRcF45mmdeThQyoN5A> Organizational
                        > > culture<http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?
                        t=ms&k=Organizational+culture&w1=Object&w2=Fine+art&w3=Culture+club&w4
                        =Fine+art+poster&w5=Fine+art+reproductions&w6=Organizational+culture&c
                        =6&s=121&.sig=I75Rij1DmCGX7kyzTKlU5g>
                        > > ------------------------------
                        > > YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > - Visit your
                        group "African_Arts<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/African_Arts>"
                        > > on the web.
                        > >
                        > > - To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
                        > > African_Arts-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com<African_Arts-
                        unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com?subject=Unsubscribe>
                        > >
                        > > - Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of
                        > > Service <http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/>.
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > ------------------------------
                        > >
                        >
                      • Alison Brierley
                        Hi John, I have just read your mail regarding your search for a Kota database, and i too would be very interested in this. Did you have any luck? I was
                        Message 11 of 11 , Feb 20, 2006
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                          Hi John,

                          I have just read your mail regarding your search for a Kota database, and i too would be very interested in this.  Did you have any luck?

                          I was visiting the GALLERIE RATTON-HOURDE, (tel. 01 46 33 32 02   fax. 01 46 33 34 02)  10 Rue des Beaux-Arts, in Paris, earlier this year.  I spoke to the lady who ran the gallery, and she told me that in 2003, 29 kotas were brought together for a special exhibition.  A book was written, which included photos of all these objects, aptly called KOTA.

                          I don�t know if this is connected to your search for the database in question, but I hope it helps.  I have a copy of this book, which looks great, but, unfortunately for me, is printed in French.

                          If you can translate French to English, I would be happy to scan the pages for you!

                          Unfortunately I missed the �you be the judge� on these impressive objects, I would have liked to have taken part, as my partner and I have 4 in our collection.

                           

                          Good luck

                          Ali

                          Alison Brierley

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