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Christina Hellmich, Manuel Jordan con Embodiments: Masterworks of African Figurative Sculpture
The Richard H. Scheller Collection, presented in this book and on display at the de Young in San Francisco, offers a diverse portrait of sub-Saharan African sculpture. More than 100 distinct ethnic groups from more than 20 present-day countries are represented in this book by works of art spanning several centuries and encompassing a broad range of styles, from realism to abstraction. In their original contexts, these objects represent ancestors, express community values and serve religious and ceremonial purposes. Beautifully photographed in natural light, these sculptures range in style from classic and iconic to rare and unusual and challenge commonly held assumptions about African art. The geographical breadth of the collection and the variations in the depictions will allow readers to explore both the histories and the formal qualities of the genre. Enlightening texts by leading scholars enhance the understanding of 122 key objects, alongside main texts on major sculptures and the nuances of the artistic canon as it pertains to more unusual works of African art. Essays on the scientific testing of pieces and the process of photographing the works round out this illustrious volume that expands our understanding of African figurative art. Published in association with Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Christina Hellmich is Curator in Charge of the Department of the Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas and the Jolika Collection of New Guinea art at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. An expert in the arts of Angola and Zambia, Manuel Jordan is Deputy Director and Chief Curator at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona.