gable ornament

Decorative architectural panel of mesbark, which was formerly attached either to the gable on the outside of a men’s house or attached to the roof on the inside. The bark sheet has been peeled from half the circumference of a tree and flattened out as best as possible. It has then been painted in black, and over-painted with curvilinear motifs in white and red paint. The general structure of these motifs is a column of four lenticular forms with four spiralling curls radiating from each. At both the broad and narrow ends, this scheme is terminated by a curving mouth and eyes. The panel represents totemic protectors of the men’s house.

Collection Information

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