Southeast Asia, The Philippines, Luzon Island, northern mountain region, Ifugao Tribe, ca. second half of the 19th century CE. A beautiful, hand-carved wooden tower shield, of a slender form with a slightly convex obverse, curved upper corners, a flat back, and an integral vertical handle with a recessed hand well on the verso. The front of the shield features an intriguing low-relief scene of two stylized lizards crawling upwards towards a central ovoid bulge, and on top an abstract anthropomorphic figure stands with one raised arm. Attractive patina envelops the entire composition, and traces of white pigment suggest this shield may have at one time been painted with bright pigment. Size: 14" W x 51.875" H (35.6 cm x 131.8 cm).
A stylistically-similar example held by a warrior can be seen in "The National Geographic Magazine." 1912, Vol. 23, p. 881.
Provenance: private Hawaii, USA collection; ex-John Richardson collection, Massachusetts, USA
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Small nicks to obverse, peripheries, and handle on verso, with light softening to some raised details, chipping to original pigmentation, and minor insect damage, otherwise intact and very good. Great patina and faint traces of original pigment throughout. Old inventory label on bottom of verso.