Africa: Trade, Traffic, Collections
Journal for Art Market Studies vol. 4, no.1, 2020
Guest Editor: Felicity Bodenstein
This issue of JAMS considers the exponential growth of an export market for cultural objects from the African continent since the middle of the nineteenth century, from the first episodes of commercial and military colonialism through to the dramatic rise from the 1890s onwards.
It then considers the shift away from the categorization of African cultural objects as ethnographic to the flourishing of a “primitive art” (also often termed as “art nègre”) trade in Paris and finally moves through the issue of post-colonial trade; closing with an article on the question of illicit trafficking that has marked the currently termed “tribal art” market for African objects.
The director of Abidjan Musée des civilisations, Silvie Memel Kassi also considers how the current situation of African museums is changing and how these institutions are preparing in order to offer a suitable environment for returning objects. The central question is the role of commercial transactions in the establishment of systematic collecting practices of cultural material from sub-Saharan Africa, transactions driven by the growing presence of European powers on the continent and motivated by the corollary establishment of specialized ethnographic collections in Europe.
Africa: Trade, Traffic, Collections (Felicity Bodenstein)
Violence, Globalization and the Trade in “ethnographic” Artefacts in nineteenth-century Sudan (Zoe Cormack)
Colonial Expeditions and Collecting – The Context of the “Togo-Hinterland” Expedition of 1894/1895 (Jan Hüsgen)
Itinerary of a Cameroon Cross River Collection in Art Market Networks. An Analysis of Transaction Correspondence between Hamburg-Berlin-Leipzig (Richard Tsogang Fossi)
The vanishing paths of African artefacts: Mapping the Parisian auction market for “primitive” objects in the interwar period (Léa Saint-Raymond/Elodie Vaudry)
Zing–Foumban–Paris: Tracing a Mumuye mask from Nigeria to France (Alexandre Girard-Muscagorry)
The Illicit Circulation of Ivorian Collections: Challenges and Prospects (Silvie Memel-Kassi)
Book Review: Yaëlle Biro, Fabriquer le regard: Marchands, réseaux, et objets africains à l’aube du XXe siècle (Felicity Bodenstein)
Book Review: Zachary Kingdon, Ethnographic Collecting and African Agency in Early Colonial West Africa. A Study of Trans-Imperial Cultural Flows (Julien Bondaz)
Interview with Jean Roudillon (Maureen Murphy)