Country of Origin
New Guinea; Gulf of Papua
35” x 7” x ½”
Overall fine condition, some depredation and wear commensurate with traditional use.
Wasserstrom Papuan Gulf Spirit Boards
Gope Board of classical form, made from a slightly bowed piece of hardwood, possibly the bottom or gunwale of a war canoe; and carved in relief with depictions of an ancestral face with linear patterning above and below on a white background, in classical style for the region. Originally from the area between the Era River, Purari Delta and Urama region. The board shows age and use, with pigments in white, red and black.
This board, though created later than some others in the donation, is an authentic example; the motif probably representing a depiction of skeletal remains.
gope board, spirit boards, Papua New Guinea, Daniel Munzert, James Wasserstrom