Polynesian neckrest - kali

Fijian, Fiji archipelago
wood
36x15cm (14x6in)
18th - 19th century
inv. no. 101
sold



A very old Fijian headrest, with a beautiful round pillow section, carved from a single piece of ironwood. There are several notches carved into the top at one end of the pillow, and notches around the perimeter of the base. Anthony Meyer has surmised that notching is a likely tally of the number of bodies, or perhaps feasts, that have been consumed over ones lifetime. At some point after collection the headrest has been coated in shellac, a common practice by Europeans living in tropical climates in the 19th century.
Contact  Currency Previous Gallery Next


Polynesian neckrest - kali