An Ife Bronze couple, related exemplare, “Ife”, Frank Willet, 1957, page 37, plate 10, with a fragmentary, similar exemplare, which was found in Ita Yemoo, 1957, backside, page 75, plate III, text on site 72, on the right arm von the female sculpture is an unprofessional repair, which was done obviously later. If this repair is recent a technical analysis according of the TL analysis will indicate, that this sculpture is recent, because the sculpture was heated to a temperature during the restoring process, in which a technical analysis verifies a “recent” sculpture. In contrast to the Ita Yemoo sculpture described by Willet, the cast wall of this bronze is relatively thick. How this is to be assessed in view of the age of both sculptures to be compared, eludes me – as a layman – of any knowledge.
“The question of fundamental dating – still one of the main questions of Benin research – Wolf approaches, however, always very carefully and with respect. He makes it clear that must remain open, whether his cognition actually” solid clues to the individual by no means completed dating of the Bronzes. “Sylvia Dolz, Treasures of Africa / Benin, the donation Baessler, Museum of Ethnology Dresden, 2006, page 13.
The cited Siegfried Wolf was a scientist and ethnologist, Sylvia Dolz argues according of this point of view that neither a natural sciences (especially TL and metallurgical analysis) nor an art-historical/stylistic method alone leads to useful results in terms of age determination. Only a combination of several reviews can lead to useful results. For us as scientific laymen, it is not possible to make relevant, extremely complex analyzes, so we can not give any information on the age and associated possible restitution claims. We have bought this item as a 20th-century copy, we imported the sculpture with legal export licences, and we will resell it as well: a good copy.
This object can be visited during the auction in the Gallery Wolfgang Jaenicke. It will not be sent and can only be picked up. After the end of the auction, the highest bidder can have the object for further analysis by its own account without significantly affecting the object in its substance. For this analysis, the winner of the auction has a period of 14 days. The object is from an old African Collection. Restitution organizations and individuals who are intensively concerned with restitution issues were informed about the object. See also Cultural Property Protection Law (Kultur Gut Schutz Gesetz – KGSG). Wolfgang Jaenicke Gallery, Berlin
TL Analysis Kotalla 550 years + / – 16 %.
more infos on request.
Height: 66 cm
Weight: 18,8 kg
Ife – Benin Exhibition August 2019, Wolfgang Jaenicke Gallery.