DETAIL: Mary MARABAMBA Fish trap No 27 #3017-01 2001 jungle vine, bush string Purchased 2002
 
Ken THAIDAY SNR. | Beizam [shark] dance mask

 
THAIDAY SNR., Ken
Australia 1950
Beizam
[shark] dance mask 1991
Sculpture
enamel paint on plastic and plywood, steel wire, dyed feathers, plastic swivel, cockatoo feathers
70.0 (h) x 26.0 (w) x 26.0 (d) cm
Purchased 1991
NGA 1991.845
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Ken THAIDAY SNR

Meriam people

born 1950, Erub (Darnley Island), Torres Strait, Australia

Beizam (shark) dance mask

Thaiday is best known for his imaginative shark head-dresses. These dance masks represent an impressive and menacing symbol of law and order. The shark mask, worn by male dancers only, is traditionally associated with the Bomai-malu cult. The shark is represented by large jaws that hide the wearer’s face, the menacing teeth mitigated by rows of feathers attached to the jaws.

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