EDITORIAL REVIEW:  2016 SAN FRANCISCO TRIBAL & TEXTILE ARTS SHOW

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(Text and photos by Michael Auliso)

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(Promoter Liz Lees)  It is true that Liz sold the show to Kim Martindale and will be enjoying retirement.  We wish her the best.  

 

We now know that the best thing for the health of the show during and after the 2008 recession was to "lower" exhibition fees, not raise them.  Having some foresight would have meant keeping more quality dealers onboard for much longer.  If a dealer has a bad or bust show and traveled from overseas to do so, they may not return again.  However, if it didn't cost quite as much, they might stay onboard.    Attendance seemed to follow along with many of those dealers who left. 

 

 

Joe Loux- San Francisco.  Joe has been doing the show for 10 years and is always upping his game.  In previous years this space was occupied by John Giltsoff and Kevin Conru.

 

(Joe Loux) Detail of the back side of a rare Shield from the Garo tribal region of N.E. India (far left in booth)

 

(Joe Loux) Early Upper Sepik Shield 

 

(Joe Loux)

 

(Joe Loux)  This Middle Sepik suspension hook was his catalog piece.

 

       

(Joe Loux) Indonesian Talaud Island shield.  Only handful are known. 

 

The crowd was modest to thin in the coming days and not many new faces.  Occasionally, you'll see the old guard of collectors roam through, but they seldom buy since their collections were formed when the best material was available.... and they too often remind us of it. 

 

Alain Naoum- Brussels.  Alain is one of the few European dealers, like Patrick Mestdagh and Joris Visser, who have been exhibiting for 15 years or more.  

 

(Alain Naoum)  Nigerian Figure (Chamba/ Koro maybe?) 

 

Miranda Crimp

 

(Jo De Buck-Brussels)  Next to an African Baga figure.  Jo told me he is working with Origins Auction as an expert.  Makes perfect sense as auction is where the buyers are.

 

(Jo De Buck-Brussels)  Note, some of these miniatures may also belong to DeRoche since the exhibit space is shared.

 

(Andres Moraga) That oval object with triangle patterns is not a shield but rather a Tutsi harp from Rawanda.

 

(Andres Moraga)  Looks like an embroidered silk and cotton Nupe royal robe.

 

Primary Source (John Strusinski)  Among the boldest personas in the business, with a sensitive refined eye for design.

 

Primary Source (John Strusinski)- This lacquer and gilt object drew me in for its amazing carving and sculptural qualities.  I didn't have time to discuss it with him, but likely an architectural temple ornament.

 

(Farrow Fine Art) Erik also had a Garo shield of the style that Joe Loux had (far right).

 

(Farrow Fine Art) Erik with local customer.

 

(Tambaran Gallery- NY)  Joining the mix this year for the first time.  Maureen was in Australia but we enjoyed seeing her pieces.  Hopefully some sold so she'll return. 

 

(Tambaran Gallery) Borneo Kalimantan Dayak ceremonial mat.

 

(Tambaran Gallery)  New Guinea Papuan Gulf figure and a Northwest Coast Tlingit raven rattle. 

 

(Tambaran Gallery) A fine Maori Whalebone wahaika club and other treasures in the showcase.

 

(Tambaran Gallery)  They brought some strong Polynesian pieces including the Maori feather box.  Nice mother of pearl inlaid spoon but uncertain on the culture (Asian/ Micronesian)?

 

(Tambaran Gallery)  Catalog submission piece and also the cover of the show catalog.  Tlingit Shaman of a witch with bound arms (Ex. George Terasaki). 

 

 

Galerie RB (Roger Bourahimou- Belgium)  I believe his first time exhibiting in San Francisco.  Chi wara headdress.  

 

(Amayas Naegele) His masks struck me.  A well used Bamileke night society Hungan mask from Cameroon (a pretty example) and a Sogo Bo puppet bird head from the Boze, Segou area of Mali (left).  How Northwest Coast does this example look?  Wow!

 

(Art of Eternity- Howard Nowes) Congo Yombe mask

 

(Sebastian Fernandez)  Hemba figure from Paolo Morigi's collection. 

 

  (MB Abram Galleries- Los Angeles)  I was thrilled to see an old friend join the show this year.

 

(MB Abram Galleries) An impressive Polynesian Easter Island (Rapa Iti) stone goddess figure collected in 1917.  (Right)  Large early steatite stone cooking bowl, with perfect symmetry, from the California Chumash Indians.

 

(MB Abram Galleries)  A selection of ancient stone tools from various early cultures and first humans (some of whom I thought I saw in the crowd wandering around).

 

(MB Abram Galleries)  A figural iron Dayak Blowgun tip from Borneo.

 

(MB Abram Galleries)  Morris and I.  We go way back and have inspired each other along the journey of dealing art.   Displayed on the wall is a collection of special needlepoint works from artist Jan Haag (Seattle).

 

 

Robert Brundage- Art from the Himalayas.  After exhibiting for 20+ years, Bob tells me this was his last one.  He and is art will be missed.

 

Robert Brundage- Nepalese figural oil lamp.

 

(Robert Brundage)

 

Asian art dealers from London (C.G. Knapton Ltd & Brandt Asian Art) Not long ago the promoters "combined" their separate Asian Art show, normally occurring the prior week,  with the Tribal show.  

 

 

A surprising catalog photo with Cole Harrell and Hillary Clinton.  Do you think he had to pay her usual $250k lecture fee for advertising?   hmmm....

 

(Cole Harrell- NY) brought some strong African pieces.

 

(Cole Harrell- NY)  Expressive kneeling Congo figure.

 

 

Art of the South Seas- Greg Hamson

 

(Art of the South Seas- Greg Hamson)  Showcase of various miniature New Guinea figures.

 

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