West Africa has a rich artistic tradition, with artists whose work rivals the great masters of European art. Yet the assumption still prevails that traditional African art is the product of “tribal workshops,” guided by neither genuine aesthetic principles nor independent artistic sensibilities.
African Masters corrects this oversight with a comprehensive overview of the most significant sculptors from the Ivory Coast and neighboring countries, including works by artists from among the Guro, Senufo, Dan, Baule, and Lobi. Works from ancient masters are juxtaposed with those of important contemporary artists and essays by renowned scholars who investigate the role of artists in traditional and modern societies, their ideals of beauty and its transformation into works of art.
Featuring more than two hundred full-color masterpieces from public and private collections—including many never before published—the book marks a milestone in research on West African art.
About the Author
The Museum Rietberg is one of Europe’s leading museums for non-European art.