Oceania, Papua New Guinea, East Sepik Province, Ramu River region, ca. first half of the 20th century CE. A fine wooden shield composed of a tall rectangular plank with rounded corners and a woven raffia handle on the verso. Along the top half of the front are four pairs of large, incised eyes and six pairs of small eyes with radiating pupils within large sclera and surrounded by thick lids accentuated with natural beige, tan, and brown pigment. A tapered triangular wedge bisects each large eye pair and features a characteristically abstract anthropomorphic countenance with yonic motifs across the brow as well as zigzagging patterns across the headdress and chin. Size: 14.25" W x 39.625" H (36.2 cm x 100.6 cm)
Exhibited at the 'Traditional Artifacts From the South Pacific' exhibition, University Gallery, University of Massachusetts at Amherst from November to December 1991.
Provenance: private New York, New York, USA collection, acquired in May 2020; ex-The Cobbs Auctioneers, Peterborough, New Hampshire, USA - Exhibited at the 'Traditional Artifacts From the South Pacific' exhibition, University Gallery, University of Massachusetts at Amherst from November to December 1991.
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Nicks to peripheries and obverse details, with a few stable hairline fissures around peripheries, chipping and light fading to pigment, and light encrustations within some recessed areas, otherwise intact and excellent. Great remains of pigment and nice preservation to obverse details.