Ancestor Figure (Konumb or Atei)

Kopar or Angoram people

Not on view

The Angoram and Kopar peoples who live along the lower reaches of the Sepik River in northeast New Guinea formerly created distinctive ancestor images (atei) with flat openwork bodies and fully modeled heads. Their bodies are frequently adorned, as here, with images of animals representing totemic species associated with the village clans and, occasionally, with smaller human figures whose significance is uncertain. Erected in lines standing shoulder-to-shoulder within the men’s ceremonial house, in the past, the powerful ancestor figures were reportedly consulted before hunting expeditions or raids on enemy villages.

Ancestor Figure (Konumb or Atei), Wood, paint, Kopar or Angoram people

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