Living Spirits with Fixed Abodes
Editor: Barry Craig
On the eve of Papua New Guinea’s attainment of independence from Australia, Chief Minister Michael Somare referred to the new nation’s cultural treasures as living spirits with fixed abodes. He was referring to the prevailing belief of Papua New Guineans that everything is invested with spirit, not least the objects carved, modeled or constructed for ceremonial, and often everyday use. In 1977, the Papua New Guinea National Museum and Art Gallery moved into a new building, located next to, but constructed before, the National Parliament. The Masterpieces Exhibition remains in place today and this book gives the reader a thorough account of each of the 209 objects on display. read more »
Header photos (left to right): Performance by Te Pua O Feani, July 21, 2005; Children's Story (Water Dreaming of Two Children), Johnny Warangkula Tjupurrula, acrylic on composition board, 1972; IL IAMB NAI? POMBRAL MOLGA KUNDUL AL? WHO IS THIS PERSON? BLACK OR WHITE? Performance by Michael Mel, April 28, 2007. Rotator photos (numbers one through four): Fiji Project gathering in front of a Masi Kesa from the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology at Cambridge University, Re-presenting Pacific Art. Edited by Karen Stevenson and Virginia-Lee Webb, Australia: Crawford House Publishing, 2010, Dan Taulapapa McMillin, 'O Taulaitu, Acrylic transfer collage and oil paint on canvas, 2012, PAA 11th International Symposium at the University of British Columbia, 2013.