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War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea


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Collection No. T-4066
Size Height 183cm x 36cm Wide
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea
War Shield Yuat River Lower Sepik River Area East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea

This fine old War Shield  from the Mundugumor people in Yuat River area of Lower Sepik River in the East Sepik Province Papuan New Guinea. Collected in 1966 by the geologist Peter Austin who luckily had a helicopter  to get to remote area to do survey and collect artworks.

This is a very beautiful old shield, the carving designs on the front of the shield consists of six well rendered faces that represent a powerful spirit called Raram.  Old shields were important clan heirlooms and each shield had personal name of an ancestor.  The superb carving is further brought to life by the infill ochre painting in red, yellow , white & black ochre’s.  The edge of the shield is pierced on both sides from the top to the bottom that has fibre tassels attached as decoration. The back of the shield is highly concave and the handle is upraised and then secured by cane on the top of the handle & a wood bar at the bottom of the handle.

The shield would date from the 1930’s period based on the date of  collection in 1966.  The shield is in very good original condition and would be a prized addition to anyone who collects New Guinea Shields or the an Art Collector who can see what the early 20th Century Western Artists saw when collecting Oceanic and New Guinea Art.

In the photos above are from my 2014 exhibition and publication: Oceanic Arts Pacifica: Artworks from the Todd Barlin Collection at the Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre in Sydney Australia.

Provenance:  Collected in 1966 by the geologist Peter Austin.  Much of  Peter Austin collection was sold to the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto and published in a book  “New Guinea : Big Man Island”  by  ES Rogers, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto Canada 1970.   The collection remains in the Toronto Museum today.  His best objects were kept for 50 years until the collection was sold to me.

The Todd Barlin Collection of Papua New Guinea Oceanic Art

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