Chukchi People Seated Walrus Ivory Figure

Culture: Siberian
Period: 1500-1700 A.D.
Material: Walrus Ivory
Dimensions: 8.5 cm high
Price: 8 000 Euro
Ref: 10011
Provenance: From an old Belgian private collection. Last with Sotheby's Paris on July 7, 2021, lot 66.
Condition: Except for some stable cracks, beautifully preserved and expressive.
Description: Rare and expressively worked out figure of a seated walrus ivory man. The unclothed figure with cropped hair, large flat ears, a long, semi-circular head and deep eyes looking straight. His mouth is small, and he seems to be lost in his thoughts, tired, possibly bored. His crossed arms are resting on his knees. Fingers and toes are accentuated. The extremely adorable figure with its strong expression is typical for the artistic walrus ivory carvings by the Siberian Chukchi people. The indigenous people from the Russian far east successfully defended themselves against Christianisation until the 19th century. The russification only started during the time of the Soviet Union. Today, about 15,000 Chukchi still live on the peninsula of the same name, about 10,000 of them still speak the traditional Paleo-Siberian language. With a beautiful, aged patina. Mounted.