Georgina Adam reports that Sindika Dokolo, who is married to the richest person in Angola, is on a campaign to repatriate works to the Dundo Museum, an Angolese institution founded in the 1930s and eventually gathering 6,000 Chokwe works that were scattered in Angola’s civil war nearly 50 years ago:
He is prepared to pay for them from a war chest he has set up, funded by African businessmen. But he won’t pay today’s prices. Dokolo has enlisted two dealers in tribal art to help him, Didier Claes and Tao Kerefoff, and regularly monitors art fairs and auction catalogues. Last month he recuperated a 19th-century Chokwe mask of a young woman, a Mwana Pwo, from a French dealer, paying €80,000 instead of the €600,000 the dealer was asking for it, after threatening legal action. He is negotiating with a second dealer over another Chokwe statue, this time priced at €1m but which Dokolo wants to buy back for €50,000.