Skip to content

Collection

All

Search

Pacific art

View More:


Title

Rimbu (ceremonial headdress)


Artists

Unknown Artist


About

'Rimbu' was a powerful spirit cult practiced by several groups across the southern highlands, in particular the Kewa and Anganen people. It is thought to have arrived in the Mendi Valley in the early 1900s. Ritual knowledge was bought and sold by powerful men and different forms of 'rimbu' were celebrated. The cult involved constructing spirit houses, playing bamboo flutes ('the talk of the spirits'), reciting sacred words and sacrificing and eating pigs. 'Rimbu' was held to increase the health and fertility of people, pigs and gardens, and engaged a wide pantheon of spirits. It was an exclusively male endeavour with women and children excluded.

Collected by Stan Moriarty at the Mount Hagen Show in 1963, this 'rimbu' headdress reflects the ingenuity and inventiveness of highlands artists in their appropriation of modern materials into traditional forms; note the incorporated '7UP' drink can.

[Exhibition text for 'Plumes and pearlshells: art of the New Guinea highlands', AGNSW, 2014]


Details


Other Title

Hat


Cultural origin

Kewa people


Dates

mid 20th century
collected 1963


Materials used

coil-woven rattan, bamboo, plant fibres, metal '7UP' drink can, white clay, red and blue pigments


Dimensions

77.0 x 48.0 x 45.0 cm :

0 - Whole; 48 cm; Width

0 - Whole; 65 cm; Length from top to bottom of cane framework

0 - Whole; 45 cm; Depth

0 - Whole; 77 cm; Overall length from top to bottom of fringe


Credit

Gift of Stan Moriarty 1977


Location

Not on display


Accession number

613.1979



Shown in 1 exhibition

Exhibition history


Referenced in 1 publication

Bibliography


Natalie Wilson (Editor), Plumes and pearlshells: art of the New Guinea highlands, Sydney, 2014, 100 (illus.), 101 (colour illus.), 161. cat.no. 44