Salawaku Dance Shield, Seram, Moluccas, Indonesia.
Shields of this type were used as a protection during fights and for the Cakalele Dance, a kind of ceremonial war dance originating from North and Central Maluku.
This rare hourglass shaped shield is carved from hard reddish wood, has a faceted surface and is decorated with painted patterns and inlaid with pieces of mother of pearl.
Condition; some inlay is missing, signs of wear and use.
H: 99 cm - 39 inch.
Provenance: Moluccas Alfoer shield collected between 1914 and 1934 by Gerrit Japin, Sergeant Major KNIL. He made maps of the area where he was and had much interest in the indigenous culture.
Literature: Traditional Weapons of the Indonesian Archipelago, Albert G. Van Zonneveld, page 118.