Archaic Boiken Platter
A small, exceptionally fine food dish carved on the underside with a low relief motif composed of a central diamond shape, with four humanoid heads representing ancestral spirits projecting, one from each corner of the diamond. A small flanged and pierced lug is carved at one side. A dish of this type and superior quality would have belonged to a man of importance. This appears to be the archetype of Boiken food dishes : the style of the heads, the carving technic with stone tools, the exceptionally fine esthetics and the obvious age and long usage place this platter amongst the "best of type" for the Boiken Plains. Area of the Boiken Plains and Murik Lakes, Northern banks of the Sepik Delta, P.N.G., New Guinea, Melanesia. Wood with a heavy patination of wear and use (old cracks and minor loss). Carved with non-metal tools. 30,2 x 28,2 x 5,5 cm. 19th century or earlier.