Bonhams announces a large El Anatsui work to lead its may sale of African art in London:
A huge masterwork titled ‘New World Map’ by Ghana’s El Anatsui (born 1944) is estimated to fetch £500,000-800,000 at Bonhams next sale of Modern and Contemporary African Art, ‘Africa Now’ in London on 23rd May.
This magisterial work measuring 11ft by 16ft (350x500cm) is similar to work that the artist has shown at the Venice Biennale.
El Anatsui has used many different materials over the years, including wood, metal, clay and more recently repurposed materials. ‘New World Map’ is a prime example of his recent work, made from flattened bottle caps woven together into a shimmering tapestry.
These hanging pieces are based on the traditional narrow-strip woven silk cloth made in Ghana, a source of national pride. Similar works by El Anatsui hang in some of the world’s most prestigious institutions, including the Sainsbury African Galleries at the British Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Pompidou, and the Smithsonian.