Global Art & Artifacts

batak

Batak Shaman Spiritual Staff. Simalungun People. Lake Toba. Sumatra

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    Sumatra is just one island of the 17,000 islands in the chain called Indonesia. The cultures specific to different islands have long been isolated from one another resulting is significant diversity. Sumatra – one of Indonesia’s largest islands – it is home to the Batak tribes.   Shamen… Continue reading

BOOK: Rare. “Art of the Ancestors Nias Batak Dayak”. Hardcover. 2009. English. Alliance Francaise de Singapour

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    Indonesian tribal art is among the most intriguing and varied in the world. There are as many styles and expressions as there are ethnic and cultural groups. Each of these groups produces unique objects of great interest and beauty that are used in rituals and ceremonies …. … Continue reading

Batak Piso Halasan Sword / Knife, Sumatra

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Detail: Hilt and scabbard are carved from bone or from some resin composite material (although I have never seen a resin composite come out of Sumatra that is this old). ASO (human-like) traditional figures are carved at both ends and insects, geckos and plant life are carved on… Continue reading

Carved Toba Batak Shaman Pole / Staff, North Sumatra

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Detail: Shaman’s staffs (Tunggal Panahuan) were used in magic ceremonies to protect against the actions of enemies. In addition, these staffs were used as a prophetic tool for diagnosing the spiritual causes of a disease. They derive their power from a specially prepared ritual substance called Pupuk. Pupuk attracts ancestor… Continue reading

Batak Medicine Horn / Container, Sumatra

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Detail: From Batak tribes of Northern Sumatra. Wood and buffalo horn. Naga / Singa head in front with ASO heads (human-like ancestor spirits) on the back and on the tip of the horn. A Cicak (a small nocturnal lizard found in most houses) is carved into the horn representing deities… Continue reading

Dayak Tribal Medicine Box, Sumatra

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Detail: This medicine container was used by the Batak Tribes in Sumatra. Carved from one piece of wood. Singa (mythical protective creatures) heads are looking up on each end of the box. An ASO (human-like head) adorns the top of the lid. These boxes are used to store medicines or… Continue reading

Toba Batak, Medicine Statue, Sumatra, Indonesia

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Carved from hardwood with intricate and traditional motifs. Storage box for jewelry and/or medicine. Crafted in the mid-1900’s.   This item has been sold. Thanks S.C !!

Toba Batak Heirloom Box or Chest, North Sumatra

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Detail: This is a Raja (village headman) box used to store valuable heirlooms and jewelry. The male Singha heads on each end are mythical protective creatures. Note the human figures beneath the Singha heads. A Cicak (a small nocturnal lizard commonly found in houses) carved on top represents deities who… Continue reading

Huge and Rare Batak Medicine Horn, Sumatra

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Detail: This horn / container comes from the Toba Batak people of North Sumatra. Buffalo horn and carved wood. Naga (serpent / dragon) head, ASO heads (human-like) and fern motifs are carved by a single craftsman. Used for herbs and medicines. This size is rare.… Continue reading

Indonesian Seahorse Container, North Sumatra

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Detail: A design most common from the Batak ethnic groups in the highlands of North Sumatra. Used to store medicinal herbs. Cast in bronze with an ancient method of wax and sand. Age unknown but probably early to mid-1900s.
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