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African Sculptures & Statues

African sculptures and statues remain as popular as ever before, appreciated by collectors for their contribution to modern art, most notably fauvism, expressionism, and cubism, as well as their enchanting aesthetic. Their artistic sensibilities and portrayal of the human body put forward by African sculptures and statues offered a radically divergent aesthetic from those that existed in Western art.

Instead of striving for realism or the perfection of human proportions as European art had since the time of Ancient Greece, African statues distorted and exaggerated aspects of the human body. This resulted in African carved wooden figures that looked otherworldly and at times were frightening portrayals. While such depictions of the human figure were viewed as naïve, crude, or aesthetically offensive by some, they were celebrated by others, such as Pablo Picasso, who was greatly inspired by these mystical forms.

The influence of African sculpture and African statue is easily perceptible in the asymmetric proportions and alien forms of many of Picasso's portraits. This influence is believed to have played a seminal role in advancing modern art away from realism towards abstraction.


Quick Facts

  • Sotheby's sold an African Fang sculpture in December 2015 for 423,000 euros
  • The village of Igbo-Ukwu in the Niger Delta boasted a casting tradition which dates the way back to the 9th century. Clay figurines have been found in this region from around 500 B.C., making them the oldest discovered examples of African sculpture
  • El Anatsui is one of the world's most celebrated contemporary artists, continuing the tradition of African sculpture and African carved wooden figures with great critical and commercial success
  • View other African artifacts, sculpture and <a href=”https://www.invaluable.com/african-masks/sc-FT5EU1IZ6M/”>African masks for sale</a> on Invaluable.

Recommended Items at Auction

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Life Size African Wood Carved Statue
Oct 30, 6:00 PM MST
Life Size African Wood Carved Statue
by Ace Of Estates
Est: $150- $300
$153 Bids
COLLECTION OF WOOD AND HORN CARVED ANIMALS
Oct 29, 10:00 AM CDT
COLLECTION OF WOOD AND HORN CARVED ANIMALS
by Selkirk Auctioneers & Appraisers
Est: $40- $80
$303 Bids
African Tribal Nkondi Nail & Wood Fetish Sculpture
Oct 27, 12:00 PM EDT
African Tribal Nkondi Nail & Wood Fetish Sculpture
by Hill Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $1,000
$502 Bids
African Queen Bronze Statue after Karl Hagenauer
Nov 10, 2:00 PM EST
African Queen Bronze Statue after Karl Hagenauer
by Hill Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $1,000
$252 Bids
African Wood Carved Pipe Holder Sculpture
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
African Wood Carved Pipe Holder Sculpture
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$102 Bids
African Stone Carved Shona Figural Art Sculpture
Oct 27, 12:00 PM EDT
African Stone Carved Shona Figural Art Sculpture
by Hill Auction Gallery
Est: $100- $1,000
$501 Bid
Chief Staff of the Bamileke, Cameroon, around 1920, wood
Oct 30, 10:00 AM CEST
Chief Staff of the Bamileke, Cameroon, around 1920, wood
by Henry's Auktionshaus AG
Est: €350- €700
€3201 Bid
Carve Stone African Zimbabwe Mother and Child Statue, Signed
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Carve Stone African Zimbabwe Mother and Child Statue, Signed
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
Early African Wood Carved Tribal Statue
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Early African Wood Carved Tribal Statue
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
(4) AFRICAN/INDONESIAN CARVED SCULPTURES
Oct 26, 11:00 AM EDT
(4) AFRICAN/INDONESIAN CARVED SCULPTURES
by Westport Auction
Est: $50- $1,000
$501 Bid
Antique African Makonde Staff, Tanzania
Nov 14, 10:00 AM EST
Antique African Makonde Staff, Tanzania
by Material Culture
Est: $500- $800
$2501 Bid
Collection of Carvings, Masks, Bat, Knife
Oct 27, 11:00 AM EDT
Collection of Carvings, Masks, Bat, Knife
by Caza Sikes
Est: $50- $75
$201 Bid
Chi Wara Carved Wood Antelope Statue Bambara Mali Africa
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Chi Wara Carved Wood Antelope Statue Bambara Mali Africa
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
T. Gumbere African Zimbabwe Stone Carving
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
T. Gumbere African Zimbabwe Stone Carving
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
Vintage African Nude Carving
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Vintage African Nude Carving
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
Wood Carved African Bookends
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Wood Carved African Bookends
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
African Wood Carving
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
African Wood Carving
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
Vintage African Hand Carved Wood Sculpture
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
Vintage African Hand Carved Wood Sculpture
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
LARGE SIGNED AFRICAN VERDITE STONE SCULPTURE OF A HIPPO
Oct 30, 3:00 PM EDT
LARGE SIGNED AFRICAN VERDITE STONE SCULPTURE OF A HIPPO
by RB Fine Arts
Est: $100- $200
$501 Bid
19th C. Ivory Coast Senufo Bird Wood Carving
Oct 30, 9:00 AM MST
19th C. Ivory Coast Senufo Bird Wood Carving
by Fidelity Estate Services
Est: $0- $0
$51 Bid
A Maori patu, carved wood and paua shell, 20th century, 40cm long
Nov 07, 10:00 AM AEDT
A Maori patu, carved wood and paua shell, 20th century, 40cm long
by Leski Auctions Pty Ltd
Est: AUD100- AUD200
AUD801 Bid
Large African Zulu Spoon with Figure, Early 20th C.
Nov 14, 10:00 AM EST
Large African Zulu Spoon with Figure, Early 20th C.
by Material Culture
Est: $300- $500
$1501 Bid
African Americana Figure
Oct 30, 9:00 AM EDT
African Americana Figure
by Dovetail Auctions, LLC
Est: $5- $500
$51 Bid

Sellers Who Sell African Sculptures & Statues


Zemanek-Muenster

Zemanek-Muenster

Signens Kunstauktionen

Signens Kunstauktionen

Cornette de Saint-Cyr

Cornette de Saint-Cyr

Material Culture

Material Culture