A TELEFOMIN AMITUNG DOOR

Provenance: Philip and Rosalind Goldman

The Telefomin are one of the Highland people who live in the Star Mountains, located at the source of the Sepik River. They have separate houses for men, women and children. The Telefomin are famous for their fine carved door boards that adorn the fronts of most of their houses. The door boards are called Amitung and are carved from planks made of large softwood trees. Each door board has a unique geometric design. The doorboards are typically about 9 feet tall, but only have 2-foot high openings. These small holes help keep the houses warm in the cold mountain climates by retaining heat. In the past, they were also meant to be easily defended in the case of an enemy attack. The sturdiness of these doorboards ensured that they could be used over several generations. Luckily, this also means that their beauty will be preserved for many more generations to come.

Sandoun, Central Highlands, Star Mountains
West Sepik, Papua New Guinea
Wood, Natural Pigments, 265 x 56 cm, Beginning of 20th Century.

Price on request.