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The Art of Collecting African Art

With the rampant development and onrush of contemporary art, artifacts and traditional antiques seem to recede into the past and become the vestiges of old days. To forestall the extinction of historical and cultural art, collectors struggle to find and save priceless pieces by developing assorted collections. African art holds an exceptional place in this regard. Comprising elements of ethnical development of the whole nation, it comes across as the myth of great value, parts of which are dispersed in different corners of the continent. Collecting African art is exciting, but it can also be a daunting challenge since it deals with authenticity. Let’s take a closer look at the peculiarities of this activity.

The Art of Collecting African Art

The peculiarities of collecting African art

Authenticity plays a vital role in collecting African art. The cultural and monetary value of a single piece is defined by several factors. Amongst them are origin, author, provenance, scarcity, and market demand. It is also worth noting that while Africa has long been known for its many talented artists and artisans, it is not that easy to determine who was an original creator of this or that artwork or what was the place where it was made. This makes things complicated. Authenticity is not obvious and should be proved through elaborate and painstaking analysis. Therefore, seeing African authentic objects nowadays is a unique opportunity to embrace centurial history and traditions through art.

The Art of Collecting African Art

The Art of Collecting African Art

Mikhail Zvyagin — A dedicated collector of African art

Mikhail Zvyagin is a Russian artist, writer, and collector. He holds one of the world’s best collections of African art, which is carefully preserved in his home in New York. Having dedicated 25 years of his life to collecting African art and antiques, Mikhail Zvyagin takes part in many exhibitions, sharing his unique collection with the world. So far, it has been exhibited at the Russian Museum of Ethnography in St. Petersburg, the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, and many other institutions. African art will never be forgotten nor wasted for so long as such dedicated collectors as Mikhail Zvyagin exist.

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