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Lot 62: Bassa River Shield,

Fine Aboriginal & Ethnographic Art

by Theodore Bruce

December 11, 2016

Sydney, Australia

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  • Bassa River Shield,
  • Bassa River Shield,
  • Bassa River Shield,
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Description: Bassa River Shield,
with a striking design of eight incised and painted spirals. Slight damage to apex. A/F.

An excellent example of an Area C shield. What makes it special is its elegant and slender free form shape. It has a distinctive fluidity and harmony seldom seen with graphic deeply carved motif. In addition, the shield is extremely thin which is a hallmark of quality and fine craftsmanship. Although it is just 1/4"- 3/8" thick (1 cm) it is fire-hardened and amazingly strong. It is in excellent condition retaining its bold pigments with no restoration.

Materials: mangrove wood, lime, ocher and charcoal pigments.

Origin: Irian Jaya, South Western New Guinea, Eastern to North East Asmat, Area C Citak Region, Daykot Village.

Brassa River, Asmat region, West Papua.
194 x 48 cm

PROVENANCE:
ex. Todd Barlin, who made many art collecting trips to PNG, West Papua and the Pacific and has run the Oceanic Arts Australia Gallery in Sydney for over 20 years. During this time he has supplied Oceanic art to many important institutions including the National Gallery of Australia and the Quay Branly.

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