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Two types of hooks can be found in Papua New Guinea. Though they might serve a utilitarian purpose, they also serve important symbolic and ceremonial functions directed toward the welfare of the entire village.

Basket Hooks:
In the rainy season, baskets hooks are used to suspend bags of food and valuables away from rats and insects.

Skull Hooks:
Skulls of enemies were displayed on these sacred hooks. These hooks were only hung in the men’s houses.
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Fig. 23:
Basket Hook,
Middle Sepik,
Wood, clay, shells
& human hair, 30”

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Fig. 24:
Skull Hook,
Makanjambit Village,
Middle Sepik,
Wood, shells, clay, cane
& human hair, 29”
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Fig. 25:
Basket Hook,
Chambri Lakes
Wood, 27”
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Fig. 26:
Basket Hook,
Middle Sepik,
Wood, shells, tortoise
shell, cane, grasses &
clay, 43”

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Figures Orator Stools Karahuts Shell Jewelry Utilitarian Items Drums


Photography: Marc Assayag
Website: Marc Assayag, Stephen Lazarus, Mary Lou Beauharnois and David Driver
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