African Art from The Menil Collection


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Edited by Kristina Van Dyke

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Bamana masks and headdresses, Lega ivories, Dogon sculpture, and Benue bronzes are among the many exquisite African artifacts found in the renowned Menil Collection. This stunning book—the first comprehensive catalogue on the de Menils' collection of African art—features 115 of the museum’s finest pieces. Dating primarily from the 19th and 20th centuries, these works come from North Africa and the Sahel, Coastal West Africa, and Central and East Africa.


An essay by scholar Kristina Van Dyke discusses the formation of the collection, which was inspired in part by its relationship to modernist works and by the couple’s interest in human rights. This insightful text also explains how the de Menils' visionary spirit was influenced by African art and places those objects within the context of the whole of the de Menils’ collection, in which works from ancient, Byzantine, medieval, modern, Oceanic, and Native American cultures speak to the universal struggle for human understanding. Entries for the selected works were written by leading scholars in the field and are grouped into sections based on regions.


Distributed for The Menil Collection

Kristina Van Dyke is associate curator for collections, The Menil Collection, Houston.

"This visual record of African masterpieces from The Menil Collection and fine essays make this a worthy addition to African art literature." —A. J. Stone, Choice

Finalist for the International Tribal Art Book Prize
ISBN: 9780300123760
Publication Date: November 25, 2008
Publishing Partner: Distributed for The Menil Collection
240 pages, 9 5/8 x 11 1/4
29 b/w + 150 color illus.
The Progress of Love

Edited by Kristina Van Dyke and Bisi Silva; With contributi

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