Old Food Platter Vanuatu
|Size||Length: 111cm x width 32cm|
This beautiful old food platter from Vanuatu was used during ceremonial occasions to share food between families and clans. I am guessing it is from Espiritu Santo Island in Samna Province in Northern Vanuatu. (if I am wrong on this can you please let me know what Island in Vanuatu it is from ? )
Carved from a single piece of hardwood the bowl or platter is in an oval form with forked finial, the bottom of the platter has two legs that run horizontally across the bowl. During special ceremonies the shallow bowl was used to prepare and serve a traditional food called Nalot a pudding made from Yam, Taro & breadfruit and other ingredients. I had this on a few occasions while in Vanuatu and it was very delicious.
Many of Vanuatu cultures have complex men’s secret societies, which involve a series of ritual “grades” through which individuals pass, by means of initiation rites, festivals, and pig sacrifices, in order to achieve increasing religious and social status. Special ritual objects were made & used for these these secret men’s societies.
Provenance: From the collection of the late David Baker (1943-2009 ) who was the president of The Oceanic Arts Society of Australia and was a great collector, expert & supporter of Oceanic Art & Cultures.
I made several trips to Vanuatu in the 1980’s visiting Pentecost Island, Malekula Island, Vao & Actin Islands and Ambrym, everywhere I went people were so friendly warm kind and hospitable when staying with families. Above are a couple field photos from those visits.
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