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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Djenne : Djenne Terracotta Sculpture of a Seated Figure
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Djenne Terracotta Sculpture of a Seated Figure - PF.3107
Origin: Central Mali
Circa: 12 th Century AD to 15 th Century AD
Dimensions: 13.25" (33.7cm) high x 7.75" (19.7cm) wide
Collection: African Art
Style: Djenne
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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This unique clay sculpture of a seated figure was sculpted by creative and skillful artisan in the West African Republic of Mali. Around the time of its creation the Malian Empire was at its zenith, for by the end of the 12th century the legendary King Sundjiata had greatly enlarged both the wealth and size of his territory. Created in such prosperous and glorious period, this unusual figure holds a mysterious aesthetic quality that captures our eyes. The figure faces upward with its large eyes and open mouth. The elongated arms appear thin and limber beside the large torso. Moreover, the large bumps covering the entire body add to the mysterious nature of the sculpture. The figure is also decorated with bracelets and shoulder scarification. Although symbolism of such enhancement remains esoteric, we can imagine many possible significances the sculpture had in Ancient Mali. Not only does the physical presence of the sculpture command our attention but it also expresses the Mali artist's distinguished and unique artistic style. - (PF.3107)


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