Pectoral "Asmat"


Asmat-people, Irian Jaya, New Guinea, Indonesia, early 20th century, private collection from Netherlands.

The Asmat are a coastal people occupying a low-lying swampy region in Indonesian province of Irian Jaya. Their homeland covers approximately 25,000 square kilometers in southwestern Irian Jaya. The swampy region include sago palms, mangroves, and patches of tropical rain forest. Asmat people are widely known for the quality of their wood sculptures, and they are also notorious for their traditional practises of headhunting and cannibalism, which were linked to the unsolved disappearance of Michael Rockefeller, 23-years old son of former New York governor Nelson Rockefeller, in 1961 while touring the region to collect indigenous artwork.

This stunning pectoral with large boar tusks and Job's tears (Coix lacryma-jobi) seeds is in perfect condition. Age-related wear and signs of use. Lovely patina. Dust and dirt. This gorgeous item comes from the collections of a closed ethnographic museum/ foundation in the Netherlands. Pectoral circumference approx. 80cm and the size of tusks 10cm x 12,5cm.