This fabulous long thick piece of Bark Cloth and the patterns are extraordinary. The Bark Cloth comes from the Baining People that live on the Northeastern tip off New Britain in the country of Papua New Guinea. They are confined to the Gazelle Peninsula in a mountainous tropical forest. The Baining are unusual among Melanesian cultures in that they create "perishable" art forms in bark cloth, wood, and leaves, which are used only once for a single day or nighttime ceremony, then discarded or destroyed. This artistic tradition serves to articulate, in visible form, the entire sphere of existence of the Baining people. Their art is presented in dramatic ceremonies representing the complementary daytime/nighttime, male/female, and village/bush aspects of Baining life. This piece of Bark cloth did not get made into a mask. These various patterns are painted on in black and red, with white negative shapes being a common visual characteristic. Red and black "tear" patterns, negative white "footprint" patterns, the marks made by "caterpillars" or "snakes," and "spear" patterns can be seen all over the front and back of the cloth that would be used in a mask. This is a rare and extraordinary piece of Bark Cloth, which is museum quality. It would be lovely framed and hung on a wall in your home. This Bark Cloth is thick and made very well and not fragile.
Shows some age, but overall in good condition.
77 Inches Long
18 Inches Wide
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