DescriptionKenyah/Kayan Dayak (Kalimantan)
1)Wood, pigment, hair
Height: 46 1/8 inches Width: 14 ¼ inches
2)Wood, pigment, hair, rattan
Height: 46 ¾ inches Width: 13 inches
The focal design painted on the front of these shields is related to a pervasive mythic being, the aso'. This was expected not just to frighten an enemy in battle, but also to harm him. The fanged face is formed by mirrored images of two intertwined back-to-back figures. The more intricate and spiraling aso'-derived designs on the inside of the shield were to protect the user.
These shields were collected by Rev. George E. Fisk, a Christian and Missionary Alliance missionary to Borneo between 1930 and the Japanese invasion of Borneo in 1942. The lot is accompanied by a mimeographed copy of the "Prayercaster" from Spokane, Washington (undated), in which Rev. Fisk recounts some of his experiences, along with two photographs made later in the United States and showing on e of the shields.
Shield one has general abrasion, paint loss, and hair loss, a patterning of small insect holes, and major vertical cracks on both sides of center and rattan binding losses at back. (This is the shield which is shown in the photograph.) Shield two has overall abrasion and minor paint and hair loss, as well as some wood loss along the long vertical sides.
Rev. George E. Fisk (collected 1930's in Borneo)
William Jamieson, Toronto
Gary Hendershott, Little Rock
Estimate: $12,000 - $15,000.
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