ASK THE EXPERT - JAN 2017
collector from U.S. would like to know the origin and the degree of rarity of this Ibeji.
The clear photographs of this beautiful Ibeji allow to indicate with facility either the place of origin and the carver who created it. The place of origin is Ila Orangun (Igbomina), and the Ibeji is shown on the file n. 836 of the Catalog of the Ibeji and on the plate 561 of the Encyclopedia of the Ibeji. The degree of rarity is RARE. The carver who created this Ibeji is the great and famous Bogunjooko, who founded his workshop at Ila Orangun around the half of 1800. Other two great carvers worked with Bogunjooko, whose names unfortunately continue to be unknown. All three of them carved the Ibeji with characteristics very diversified, but with a common element: the smiling face. Nowadays the Ibeji carved by Bogunjooko are very few, since they were carved using tender woods and therefore they were easy prey of the termites. The damages caused by the termites are, in fact, very visible on the hairstyle and on the base of this Ibeji. This damage does not detract anything to the beauty of the patina and to the quality of the sculpture, and its commercial value, if confirmed by a valid expertise, would be very high.