X65.3102, X65.3103 Posts with ancestor figures

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Object Name: Posts with ancestor figures

Artist: Unknown

Place of Origin: Leti Island, Southwest Moluccas, Indonesia

Date/Era: Probably 19th century

Dimensions: H: 175 cm

Medium/Materials: Wood

Credit Line: Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of the Wellcome Trust.

Accession Number: X65.3102, X65.3103

Description

Posts of this type may have been made for funerals with food offerings used to entice the soul of the deceased to take up residence in the post. Male figures elevated on poles may also have been erected in the center of Leti villages to represent founding male ancestors, while figures of the first female ancestor, carved in a different style, were kept inside small shrines.

Source: Marla C. Berns, World Arts, Local Lives: The Collections of the Fowler Museum at UCLA. Fowler Museum, Los Angeles, 2014.

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