Nadya Levi, a sculptor with a passion for African Art.
Born in 1929 in Bucarest, Nadya Levi left Roumania for Antwerp in 1929 where she studied sculpture at the Antwerp Academy.
In the early 1960s, Nadya Levi started collecting African art, and also became a dealer. The Dutch dealer in African and Oceanic art Loed Van Bussel, introduced her to Herman Norden who would become her husband. Herman followed Nadya to Antwerp where he would open his antique shop.
While expanding her career as a dealer in African art, Nadya also continued her work as a sculptor – her monumental soldered metal sculptures were shown in several cultural centers – and became the mother of three sons.
In her grand Antwerp townhouse, she received visits from the major dealers of the time such as Patricia Withofs, Henry Kamer and Christine Valluet, Paolo Morigi, Tishman, the baron Rolin, Simpson, Charles Ratton, Ladislas Segy, and many others. Traveling between Antwerp, London, Paris, and New York she skimmed auction houses and galleries and used these extensive travels to visit her clients, who would, in turn, come to visit her in Antwerp.
The artistic lineage of Nadya Levi was passed on to her sons. Jacob Norden became an antique dealer specialized in musical instruments, while David Norden followed more closely in his parents’ steps, becoming a dealer of African art himself, and Oliver (Olivier) Norden is a painter and performer.
Nadya Levi lived until her final days in the Antwerp townhouse where she enjoyed her beautiful garden.
At age 92 she passed away, having lived a full life. Native auctions has been entrusted with a number of objects that were part of her life and dreams. We wish that these keenly collected pieces will keep her legacy alive in collections all over the world.
Nadya Levi and Werner Gillon.
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