Ancestor Figure Murik Lakes East Sepik Province Papua New Guinea
|Size||Height 42cm Without the stand|
This beautiful old Female Ancestor Figure is from the Murik Lakes area in the East Sepik Province of Papua New Guinea.
Carved in the form of a strong young woman in full health, with a warm expression on her face. She is standing facing forward with her arms held to her sides with hands resting on her hips. Wearing a dog’s teeth necklace around her neck which an important traditional currency & bridal dowry in New Guinea. Both her ears & nose are all pierced, and once held fibre attachments and has a nice honey-colored patina from long handling.
In the Sepik River societies, each community had carved wood figures which were associated with specific ancestors, these were important ceremonial figures each figure had their own personal name.
Ancestor figures were an important part of a community’s spiritual wellbeing, they offered protection from malevolent forces and help to ensure fertility for gardens growing large yams and taro as food sources.
Provenance: This figure was collected during WW2
The Todd Barlin Collection of Oceanic Art