Balinese dancer

AD 20th century ~ AD 20th century
  • Type
  • Materials
    Wood, colour pigment
  • Measurements
    Width 8,6 cm Length 20 cm
  • Creator name
    Not known
  • Creator date
    Probably early part of the 20th century
  • Where it was made
    Indonesia; Bali
  • Time period
    AD 20th century ~ AD 20th century
  • Creation date
    20th Century; Probably early part
  • Function
    In a collection of more than 600 objects primarily from Bali, but also from Lombok, Sumatra, Java, and Sulawesi, there is a small wooden sculpture depicting a male dancer. The legs are bent and turned somewhat outwards, the feet, with the weight on the heels, touch the ground in a light springy step. The dancer is about to shift position and has been caught in the moment of movement by an unknown artist. The costume of the figure, the long waist shawl with its ends hanging down in artfully draped folds, the broad neck collar and the large decorative hair ornaments, is carried by many of the dancers in Balinese dance dramas. There are iconographical similarities with dress and decorations of the dolls of the shadow play as well. The sculpture is somewhat damaged, which makes identification harder. It may show a character in one of the dance dramas Gambuh or Arja or show a baris dancer. The dancer has a keris on his back cut from retwel wood. From the back the head has a Garuda like appearance
  • Acquisition
    Acquired by Åke Kistner (1908-1976). Between 1937 and 1939 he lived in Bali, where during the two first years, he brought together a sizeable collection which he donated to the Museum of Ethnography, Stockholm.
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