Mar 30, 2021
Mar 30, 2021
Mar 30, 2021

Hook Figure

Hook Figure

c. 1920–1930

Painted wood and cowrie shell

Overall: 207 x 6.4 cm (81 1/2 x 2 1/2 in.)

Gift of Edgar A. Hahn 1963.553



To the Arambak People, this abstract human figure represents the spirit of war and hunting. Stored in the men's ceremonial houses, such sculptures could not be viewed by women or children. Before hunting or headhunting expeditions, such figures were rubbed with special substances to induce possession by the spirit. The hook arching above the stylized face represents a feather. In the middle of the body is the heart, framed by crescent-shaped ribs. Below is the figure's calf.

See also
Oceanic Art
Type of artwork: 
Credit line: 
Gift of Edgar A. Hahn

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