The appeal of New Guinea's art lies in the people's extraordinary resourcefulness and creativity. For centuries, they have made objects in order to communicate with the spirit world. Many pieces, based on myths and ancient religious themes, stand in comparison with the world's great sculptural masterpieces. Some were made in response to health, fertility or rites of passage, others signified individual stature in a village, invoked the end of a mourning ritual or warded off evil and sickness. Everyday objects were just as carefully crafted, including house posts, dishes, canoes or shields. The range of media reflects the natural resources available to the New Guinean: shell, rock, feathers, bone, wood, bark, cloth, sago-leaf, nuts and seeds, human hair, and brilliant colors from natural pigments. Although these objects were never intended to last beyond their immediate function, they have in fact survived for hundreds, sometimes thousands, of years.
Drawn from the Jolika Collection of John and Marcia Friede, the world's foremost private collection, this two-volume publication provides rich detail and a broad-based survey of the art of New Guinea. Volume one depicts the lavish selection of magnificent color plates. Volume two features three essays by noted scholars and an extensive, illustrated catalogue section by John Friede. Contains two hardcover books in a slipcase.
Hardcover with slipcase, 790 pages