We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.


Kwiy aegop (apron adorner)

mid 20th century
collected 1968


Unknown Artist

  • Details

    Other Title
    Man's ceremonial lap lap
    Place where the work was made
    Nipa Nipa-Kutubu District Southern Highlands Province Papua New Guinea
    Cultural origin
    Wola people
    mid 20th century
    collected 1968
    Media categories
    Mixed media , Animal material , Botanical material , Textile
    Materials used
    plant fibre string, red and yellow pigment, 'tigaso' tree oil, plaited split-rattan chains, 18 pig tails, 2 animal tails
    18.5 x 43.0 cm panel; 60.0 cm length, including 'streamers' :

    0 - Whole, 18.5 cm (7 5/16"), width of oval-shaped band

    0 - Whole, 43 cm (16 15/16"), length of oval-shaped band

    Purchased 1977
    Not on display
    Accession number
    © Wola people, under the endorsement of the Pacific Islands Museums Association's (PIMA) Code of Ethics

    Reproduction requests

  • About

    This pig-tail-fringed apron adorner was worn on special occasions to enhance a man's appearance. Although acquired in Wola territory in the southern highlands, they were more common among neighbouring Huli people. The 'kwiy aegop' was worn in front of long aprons with the side straps tucked into a bark girdle. They lasted for many years and were stored in protective leaf parcels.

    Tightly knitted from lengths of bast fibre, the size and shape vary from small and triangular to large and rectangular. The outer surface is coloured with 'dind hat' (red ochre) or powdered trade-store paint mixed with 'tigaso' tree oil or pig grease.

    The lower edge is adorned with linked chains of cane and tassels of tails from animals killed by the owner, his relatives and friends. The origin of the 'kwiy aegop' is unknown, but in the past they were highly treasured objects.

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

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 2 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 4 publications