Arts of the Pacific Islands
Wood, fiber, pigment
33 5/8 x 11 5/8 x 2 in. (85.4 x 29.5 x 5.1 cm) (show scale)
This item is not on view
Brooklyn Museum Collection
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Elema. Shield, 19th century. Wood, fiber, pigment, 33 5/8 x 11 5/8 x 2 in. (85.4 x 29.5 x 5.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn Museum Collection, 00.135. Creative Commons-BY
overall, 00.135.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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The object is a carved wooden shield that is worn over the shoulder. It has decorative patterns in low relief with white and red pigment in recessed areas and black pigment in relief areas. The shield is a rectangular shaped plank with two hornlike extensions from the top. Inside the rectangular field on the front are stylized facial features. Red is used only in the recesses of the eyes, mouth, and in a bull’s-eye motif on the upper, proper left, extension. The object's reverse is un-carved and undecorated. The structure of the shield is generally intact with a couple of fine hairline cracks along the length of the shield. No breaks are visible. Small chips, dents, and nicks can be found at the corners and edges of the shield. Shallow scratches and dents can be seen throughout piece.
From record printed on 10/9/97 and hand-written in "Phys. desc." section: Rectangular shield with a notch cut into the top edge that is large enough to accommodate an arm. Shield tapers slightly toward the top. An abstract face is carved in low-relief at the center of the shield, which is bordered by a zigzag pattern. The shield is painted red, black, and white. Condition: good.
From accession card: Carved wooden shield worn slung over the shoulder so that the arm, holding the bow, comes through the opening at the top and is perfectly free while the body is protected; painted red, black and white. Condition: good.
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