War shield, Mappi/Awyu, Digul River area / Papua New Guinea.

From my own collection: Rare war shield from the Mappi or Awyu from Digul River area of southwest New Guinea. Shields from this area are leaf-like in form and smaller to those of the Asmat. The front is carved in high relief and decorated with red, white and black pigments.

According to Beran and Craig (2005: p. 162), "Shields said to be from the 'Mappi' and the 'southern Awyu' are significantly different in shape to those of their western neighbours. They are leaf-like in form with a stem-like projection at the top and the pointed end at the bottom. Like the Asmat shields, the handle is vertical, projecting handgrip out of the wood of the shield at the rear."

Condition: dry wood, weathered, traces of wear and use.

Dimensions: 131 cm x 31 cm = 51,6 inch x 12.2 inch.