X85.1073 Door

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Toraja peoples
South Sulawesi, Indonesia
Early to mid-20th century
Carved and painted wood
H: 107.0 cm, W: 54.5 cm, D: 26.0 cm (H: 42.1 in, W: 21.5 in, D: 10.2 in)
Fowler Museum at UCLA. The Jerome L. Joss Collection. X85.1073


This door provided passage between two rooms in a Toraja lineage house (tongkonan). Behind it lay the sumbung, a special room in the southwestern part of the house where the dead are laid out before funerals. The buffalo is an auspicious motif in Toraja culture, and the staff between the horns is a symbol of defense or protection for the sumbung.

Source: Gallery wall text, Fowler in Focus – Doors in Global Perspective, 2007