The Makonde tribe in Tanzania are famous for their intricate wood carvings, including a tradition of “Family tree” or “Tree of life” cataloging the people in a family or extended family. Chisels and knives are pretty much the only tools. This one is exceptional. In the late 60s or early 70s, the new theme park Bush Gardens in Tampa brought a group of master carvers from Tanzania as part of the promotion for one of the new exhibits, safaris, etc. Neta bought this extraordinary piece from one of them, in addition to a few more common pieces. It has been in one or another of my offices since. I have not counted the figures in this sculpture, but there must be close to 100. I have done enough wood carving to know expertise or genius when I encounter it. These intricate carvings, with limbs as thin as a skinny soda straw, with expressive faces and textured hair and etc. On a piece of ebony weighing 22 pounds (after carving) is hard to believe. Signed by the artist. WHEN MOVING THIS PIECE, HUG IT. DO NOT PICK IT UP WITH YOUR FINGERS IN THE’HOLES’ WHERE YOU CAN PUT A GREAT DEAL OF LEVERAGED PRESSURE ON VERY THIN LIMBS. The item “Vintage Master Wood Sculpture Tree of Life Huge 42×7 Ebony Africa Makonde” is in sale since Saturday, January 4, 2020. This item is in the category “Collectibles\Cultures & Ethnicities\African\1900-Now\Figures & Sculptures”. The seller is “pnpalmharbor” and is located in Palm Harbor, Florida. This item can’t be shipped, the buyer must pick up the item.
- Handmade: Yes
- Country/Region of Manufacture: Tanzania, United Republic of
- Provenance: Winders Collection