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Commemorative Figure (Atei)

Carved to commemorate an important ancestor, this figure straddles the line between relief sculpture and sculpture in the round. Set up in men's houses—communal buildings where men gather to socialize and hold religious and social rituals—such figures combine representations of the human form with depictions of totemic animals.

Kopar peoples, Papua New Guinea
Commemorative Figure (Atei)
Late 19th or early 20th century
Wood, pigment, incrustation
H. 77 ½ in. (196.9 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Raymond and Laura Wielgus Collection, 2010.12