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Bruce Frank Primitive Art
New York City, NY
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Bamboo Container for storing Cock fighting blades

Kayanic Dayak, East Borneo, Indonesia
Early 20th century

Provenance: Inst. Voor Kulturele Anthropologie Van De Katholieke Univer. Nijmegen, Netherlands

Decorated bamboos are an early mark of a man’s accomplishment as a refined carver.  The format is similar to painting.  The background is dyed to leave the design in the natural color of the bamboo.  The background is carved out with a small pointed knife, producing a rough surface to which dye will adhere.  The dye is then rubbed over the whole of the surface and, when dry, the smooth untouched surface of the bamboo is lightly scraped with a knife to return it to its original color.  The design is thus one in low relief.  Over time the bamboo surface becomes naturally burnished and develops its own patina.  This example is decorated with two central coiled Aso Dragons surrounded by foliate scrolls and tendril designs.  Tightly woven bands of rattan are found at the top and bottom of the bamboo and the container is surmounted by a carved wood stopper, with a European glass finial.  Included with this container, is the original Inventory card created by the Nijmegen Anthropology Museum, when they first obtained this piece.

Bamboo Container for storing Cock fighting blades

Kayanic Dayak, East Borneo, Indonesia
Early 20th century

Provenance: Inst. Voor Kulturele Anthropologie Van De Katholieke Univer. Nijmegen, Netherlands

Decorated bamboos are an early mark of a man’s accomplishment as a refined carver.  The format is similar to painting.  The background is dyed to leave the design in the natural color of the bamboo.  The background is carved out with a small pointed knife, producing a rough surface to which dye will adhere.  The dye is then rubbed over the whole of the surface and, when dry, the smooth untouched surface of the bamboo is lightly scraped with a knife to return it to its original color.  The design is thus one in low relief.  Over time the bamboo surface becomes naturally burnished and develops its own patina.  This example is decorated with two central coiled Aso Dragons surrounded by foliate scrolls and tendril designs.  Tightly woven bands of rattan are found at the top and bottom of the bamboo and the container is surmounted by a carved wood stopper, with a European glass finial.  Included with this container, is the original Inventory card created by the Nijmegen Anthropology Museum, when they first obtained this piece.

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