The Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas
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Northern Mandak peoples, Malom village, Lelet Plateau, New Ireland
Memorial Figure, Uli
Wood, pigment, shell, sea-snail operculum, fiber
Raymond and Laura Wielgus Collection
Indiana University Art Museum, 91.498


Imposing memorial figures from New Ireland were displayed at male rites associated with the burial of the skulls of leaders, which concluded funerary celebrations that took place during the year following the death of important men. Although the intriguing appearance of such figures demands explanation, we have little firm field information about their iconography or the contexts in which they appeared, since they have not been used for several generations.