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    Description

    BAULE, Ivory Coast
    Female Figure

    Wood, pigments, glass beads, fiber

    A "Blolo Bla" is a female figure or image of a "wife from the spirit world." "Blolo" is loosely translated as "the village of truth" in the spirit world, to which the soul of every Baule person remains connected throughout life. Every soul is intact in the spirit world before being born into this, the physical world, and every soul has a spouse in the spirit world. Normally, the spirit spouse is unseen and unfelt, but sometimes it becomes dissatisfied or jealous and causes trouble to make its feelings known. After misfortune or an unexpected run of bad luck, the person consults a diviner, who can diagnose the problem, sending the person to a carver, who makes a figure of the spirit spouse. The carving fixes the spirit in the physical world and the person then spends time with the image in communion, making small sacrifices to its now accessible spirit to reestablish harmony. Normally, the ownership and use of such a figure is a private matter, not mentioned in public.

    There are significantly more female spirit spouse figures than male ones, indicating that men feel more disturbances from spirit world spouses than women, and the use of such figures has now been transferred from villages to cities. The present figure is transitional, retaining a traditional hairstyle and woman's glass waist beads, but wearing European shoes. Wear is apparent on the heels but the figure is in overall very good condition, with no losses.

    Provenance:
    The Robert V. Berg Collection

    Read more about the Robert V. Berg Collection here.



    Height: 15½ inches


    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

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    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    July, 2016
    8th Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 340

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