Posted on March 30, 2022

African Mask Sold for 4.2 MN Euros in France Despite Protest

Agence France-Presse, March 26, 2022

A carved mask from Central Africa, dating from the 19th century, was sold in France for 4.2 million euros ($4.6 million) on Saturday, despite Gabonese protesters in the auction house calling for the item’s “‘restitution”.

The rare wooden “Ngil” mask, used in ceremonies by the Fang ethnic people of Gabon, smashed its estimate of 300,000-400,000 euros {snip}

“It’s a case of receiving stolen goods,” a man describing himself as a member of the Gabonese community in Montpellier exclaimed {snip}

“We’ll file a complaint. Our ancestors, my ancestors, from the Fang community, we will recover this object”, the protester added, describing the mask as a “colonial ill-gotten gain”.

{snip}