Pagar Figure
Early 20th Century
Indonesia, Sumatra, Batak Tribe
Provenance: Herbert Juan d’Silva, The Hague

Pager figures defended against evil spirits. Instilled with apotropaic powers, these figures contained the souls of people who died. Honored with offerings and incarnations, these figures could be used as communication with the ancestors. This example’s elongated face, undulating eyebrows, and sculpted chest with geometrical decoration are typical of Batak sculptural traditions. The torso is compact, with arms and legs carved into the block of wood. The hands, clasped over the navel creates space for the “pukpuk" cavity, where powerful magical substances were kept. Horse hair has been attached to the top of the head. The figure’s dark color is stunning.

Height: 15 inches
IN 7-12-16 / SOLD


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