Ramu, Papua New Guinea
19th Century
Previous Collection: Ben Tursch, Brussels

This elaborate mortar of superlative quality is one of the most inventive examples I have handled. The figures are carved with a motion that projects a subtle dynamism that is not often seen in Sepik mortars. The carver created each figure in hunkered position but they all have a personality of their own. This piece must be seen in person to truly appreciate the artistic greatness of this object. The patina inside the bowl shows great signs of use and the outer ’body’ portion of the mortar is smooth to the touch from generations of handling. The color of the wood is simply gorgeous; overtime it has developed a delicate honey brown hue; with areas of encrustation. In excellent condition.

This mortar stands 5.75 inches tall.

SOLD / IN 5-04-09