Ceremonial Beaded Jacket, Sape Malik
Maloh, West Kalimantan, Borneo
Early 20th century
Trade beads, bark cloth, trade cloth, batik, sequins, and small bronze bells
21 in x 18 in :: 53.34 cm x 45.72 cm
Most beaded jackets are contemporary works that reflect the desirability of Borneo beaded items to Western collectors. Only a small number of beaded jackets are truly as old as this one. The front depicts two aso (dragon-dogs) or naga (dragons) with gaping mouths and curvilinear tails. Above their lower jaws are trophy heads. The reverse depicts the power of conjoined beasts surrounded by trophy heads that both protected the wearer's backside and proclaimed their status. This is a museum quality example of the genre with unusual designs that are consistent with its age and use.
Inventory # 103203
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