Ɵ Marquesas Islands fan handle tahi'i, Marquesas Islands, Polynesia
Hardwood with a glossy brown patina
H. 31,8 cm
Marquesas Islands fan handle tahi'i, Polynesia
H. 12 1/4 in
- Lady Brassey, probably collected during a trip on the 'Sunbeam' (1876 - 1883)
- Hastings Museum
- James T. Hooper, Arundel, n°428
- Wayne Heathcote
- Christie's, London, 3-4 July 1990, lot 114
- Private American collection
- Phelps, Steven, Art and Artefacts of the Pacific, Africa and the Americas, The James Hooper Collection, Hutchinson Publications, London, 1976, p. 102.
Former Tahi'i Marquisian fan handle (ke'e), with a beautiful warm patina. Two pairs of caryatid tiki follow one another vertically, the lower pair resting on two stylized Janus faces, two heads (of lizards?) with elongated sculpted noses stretching into a supple, rounded pattern at the end of the object. Details distinguish each tiki - position of the arms, drawing more or less hemmed in the ear, hollow between the eyebrows - in a gesture where the artist's hand is as precise as it is precious.
Reserved for the highest dignitaries, Marquesan fans were also the prerogative of specialized sculptors, tapped when they sculpted a tahi'i, so much was this type of object revered. The alternation of sharp edges and hollows that hollow out the material, the luxury of hemmed, hatched and bounced details, is the undeniable mark of a great artist.
Very beautiful brown patina.
Location of the item France - 75008 Paris