**First Time At Auction**
West Africa, Mali, Bamana peoples, ca. early to mid-20th century CE. A hand-carved wooden puppet with a slender body, a knob-shaped tip, and a thick midsection surmounted by a highly stylized anthropomorphic head. The ovoid head bears button eyes secured by iron pins, a slender nose, a rounded chin, and a tall forehead topped by a simple coiffure. The midsection is laterally pierced to support articulated arms. Puppets like this example represent a character in Bamana puppetry performances known as Manni of Sotigi, the horseman. Size: 2.8" W x 22.875" H (7.1 cm x 58.1 cm)
Provenance: ex-private St. Petersburg, Florida, USA collection; ex-Sarasota Estate Auctions, Sarasota, Florida, USA (April 29, 2018, lot 670); ex-Bart family collection, New York, New York and Florida, USA, acquired in the 1950s to 1960s
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