Canoe prow ornament

Production date
1850-1899
Country
Solomon Islands
State/Province
Western
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Object detail

Description
Canoe prow ornament, wooden representation of a human head, shoulders and arms, painted black, inlaid with nautilus shell.
Classification
CH classification INDIGENOUS CULTURES Melanesian & South Sea Islander canoe prow
Maker
Production date
1850-1899
Production place
Measurements
H280 x W147 x D151mm
Media/Materials description
Wood, Nautilus shell
History and use
This canoe prow was collected by Peter Tornaros, a recruiter on labour trade vessels, and belongs to the Australian South Sea Islander Kastom Collection.

The shell inlay designs on this canoe prow from the Solomon Islands represent the face painting motifs also worn by individual people from this region.

Canoe prows such as this one, that represent human figures are also referred to as 'toto isu' and 'nguzunguzu' in New Georgia in the Western Solomon Islands.
Associated person
Registration number
E581

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