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HOME : African & Tribal Art : Guro, Yaure : Guro Wooden Heddle Pulley
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Guro Wooden Heddle Pulley - SP.651
Origin: Central Ivory Coast
Circa: 20 th Century AD
Dimensions: 10.5" (26.7cm) high
Collection: African
Medium: Wood

Location: UAE
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"Nobody likes to live without beautiful things," replied a Guro weaver when asked why he hung a decoratively carved pulley on his wooden post loom set up beneath a mango tree. The decorative features of West African heddle pulleys -- devices that hold the heddles in looms -- are created solely for aesthetic satisfaction, and have no ritual or magical purpose. The delicately carved figure on the pulley peers down at the weaver as he works and becomes his constant visual companion. The formal composition of these small pieces shows great virtuosity and variation: the artists strive for originality, ingenuity, elegance, and imaginative effects. Naturalistic faces occur rarely on pulleys. Instead, carvers draw upon a wide repertoire of facial styles that appear on other spiritual statues and masks. This heddle pulley takes on the form of a gorgeous young woman. Her hair has been pulled together into a spherical top-knot held in place by a square-shaped bead. Overall, this pulley shows the delicacy, smoothness of finish, and skillful composition that are prized by African carvers. - (SP.651)


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