A Fine Old Solomon Islands War Club Santa Cruz Island Eastern Solomon Islands
This Fine Old War Club is from the Santa Cruz Islands Group, which is a group of remote islands in the Pacific Ocean, called Temotu Province in the remote Eastern Solomon Islands. Dating from the late 19th to early 20th Century
This large heavy club was made for a strong large man. The most striking aspect of this club is the row of finely carved sharks in high relief down the center of the club.
I could not find the shape of this club in my limited library resource and I can’t say 100 % for sure it is from the Santa Cruz Island group but the way that the sharks are carved looks exactly like other Santa Cruz Islands Sharks carved on their ancestor figures ( see attached photo of figure from the British Museum) and also they had similar carved Sharks on other types of artefacts including the wood charms attached to the famous Santa Cruz Red Feather Money Currency Rolls (see example photo above).
As noted by the anthropologist William Davenport in his book: ” Santa Cruz Islands Sculpture and its ritual context ” 2005 the University of Pennsylvania Museum.
Meboku is a Shark Human deity in Santa Cruz Islands mythology and he is prevalent in many of their stories.
Some of the very old carved wood ancestor figures called Dukna have sharks attached to their body and some of these Dukna figures are depicted grasping a club or baton which is actually a Shark Killing Club and refer to the fishing for this awesome animal and other large fish like Tuna.
The shape of the club & the shark’s designs in high relief makes this a beautiful sculptural artwork.
Provenance: The Todd Barlin Collection of Solomon Islands Art
I first went to Papua New Guinea in 1985 for an adventure & what I found was that I really enjoyed being with the people of New Guinea, over the next 38 years I spent extensive time spent collecting and documenting traditional art & ceremonies in remote areas of Papua New Guinea & West Papua, The Solomon Islands & Vanuatu & the other Pacific Islands countries. During these travels, I made major collections of New Guinea & Oceanic Art for major Museums and Public Art Galleries
I was honoured by being in the prestigious Louvre Museum Magazine for the collections I made for The Museum of African & Oceanic Art Paris in1996 (now the Musee Quai Branly) for the exhibition “Asmat et Mimika d’ Irian Jaya April 1996 At THE MUSEE NATIONAL des ARTS D’AFRIQUE et d’ OCEANIE, Paris
See all of the links & photos in my new EXHIBITIONS GALLERY and there is the link to the article in the prestigious Louvre Magazine 1996
I have artwork for Museums & Art Galleries but also for collectors at every stage of their collecting. I want to encourage people to explore the fine art of New Guinea & West Papua and the Pacific Islands and to be able to see and touch the artworks in a relaxed and friendly manner in my Sydney Gallery. I would like to invite you to visit my gallery and see the artworks in person and also look at my website www.oceanicartsaustralia.com where there are many Galleries & Sub Galleries to explore.
My Gallery of nearly 40 years is the last physical gallery in Sydney that specialises in New Guinea & Oceanic Art. Sydney is just a couple hours’ flight to New Guinea & the Pacific Islands where all of these amazing artworks came from, Australia’s closest neighbours.