Oceania, Papua New Guinea, Sepik River, ca. mid 20th century CE. A hand-carved wooden canoe prow topped by a dolphin, its long body stretched out horizontally, with its nose forming the tip of the prow and the rest of its form present in high relief along the surface of the canoe. The sides of the canoe have small notches carved into them. The rugged terrain of Papua New Guinea means that the easiest form of travel for its native indigenous inhabitants is via dugout canoe, especially in the region around the long inland Sepik River. In the past and today, the prows of large canoes in this culture are carved, often in the form of animals with mystical connections or that represent clans. Size: 10" W x 33.75" H (25.4 cm x 85.7 cm)
Provenance: ex-private Tucson, Arizona, USA collection; ex-Ron Perry collection; Ron Perry collected art and artifacts for more than 40 years in New Guinea and the South Pacific. He collaborated with Carolyn Leigh to write a book entitled, "Art Dealer in the Last Unknown: Ron Perry & New Guinea Art: the early years 1964-1972" (2011)
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