African art > Statues > Statue Asmat
Statue Asmat, Irian Jaya (N° 16360)
Ex-collection art French Papua.
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Melanesia, in the Pacific Ocean, encompasses the Papua (Irian Jaya), Papua New Guinea, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, and the Solomon Islands. The population is the result of successive migrations resulting in racial heterogeneity resulting in many languages and great artistic diversity. Most of these communities were organized into male societies with ceremonial boxes in which statues, masks and ritual objects were stored. A former Dutch colony, Papua is an Indonesian province located west of New Guinea. The Asmat settled in the south of this region, among the Mimika and Marind-Anim.Former head cutters, cruel warriors, the Asmat adorned the heads of their enemies with feathers, colored seeds, and making necklaces for their wives. Their male anthropomorphic sculptures, often encased with white pigments associated with the spirit world, represent the primordial ancestor. The filiform figure is depicted perched on a pedestal, slightly leaning forward, holding an object with both hands. The scarifications engraved on the body, in the form of curvilinear motifs and circles, are enhanced with orange and blue-grey pigments.
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