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Enquiry from Online Galleries regarding "Marquesas Ironwood Ceremonial Stilt Step ‘Tapuvae’"
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Look at what I found on the Online Galleries website!
The curved top incised with diagonal motifs the standing male Tiki figure pierced free of the shaft at its back and head the ears carved as double scrolls in relief clusters of Tattoo motifs at each side of the mouth and on the chin above the eyes a curved head band with feathering the body hands and legs carved with shallow diagonals
Dark glossy patina
Patches of wear and surface losses
Early 19th Century
Size: 34.5cm high, 7cm wide, 9.5cm deep - 13½ ins high, 2¾ ins wide, 3¾ ins deep
Georg Heinrich von Langsdorff writing in his ‘Voyages and Travels…’ published in 1813 wrote: ‘The best runners on stilts, who perform at the public dancing festivals are tabooed for three days before; they do not, in consequence, go out, are well fed and have no intercourse with their wives. This is probably with a view to increasing their strength….’