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Art-Pacific (Carolyn Leigh - Ron Perry): Guide to Artifacts

Kambaramba Village, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea

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[Kambaramba gable mask: 21k]

Figure 1: Haus Tambaran gable mask for the front gable. Carved by Theo Abel. He is recognized as a powerful Master carver in the village and his house stands off by itself. He has the right to take another carver to court if they carve this mask. (Personal communication, Robin Leahy, Melanesian Arts Centre, Lae, PNG, 1998)

Kambaramba Village is built entirely on stilts over an oxbow segment of the Sepik near Angoram. It is often a stop for the tour boats because of its photogenic qualities. The village has always been one of the poorest on the river and was built on stilts because the people were not powerful enough to claim any dry land for their own. The women of the village often worked as local prostitutes to help support their families. Many families from Kambaramba were given blocks of land and rubber trees in the Gavien Resettlement Project during the Australian administration to help alleviate these conditions.

Kambarambas are not known for their carvings, but like most Sepiks, they decorate their canoe prows with crocodile heads and make low tables and stools for their houses. Since some of our crew comes from Kambaramba, we usually go out to Gavien to buy from their camp. Over the years, I've collected some lovely and also some weird pieces. One I wish I had kept was a human figure with a crocodile head carved from a forked branch in a pose that resembled a ballerina in a grass skirt doing a plié.

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back to Guide to Sepik River Carvings

Browse Sepik River villages - Middle Sepik: Aibom | Chambri Lakes | Kamindimbit | Kandangai | Kanganaman | Koiwat and Kamangauwi | Korogo | Mindimbit | Mumeri | Palambei | Tambanum | Yamok | Yentchan | Yenichenmangua | see also Karawari and Blackwater Rvs | above Pagwi: Ambunti Mtns (Waskuk) | Hunstein | Japandai | near Angoram and below: Angoram | Imbando and Taway | Kambaramba | see also Ramu Rv

[Map of the middle length of the Sepik River, East Sepik Province, Papua New Guinea: 9k]

More articles/photos of NEW GUINEA MASKS:

Middle Sepik River | Angoram | Kambaramba | Tambanum | Hunstein | Imbando and Taway | Mumeri | Blackwater River | Lower Ramu River | Middle Ramu River | basket yam masks | wooden yam masks | Baining | Sulka | Tolai dukduk | Malagan | Papuan Gulf | Gogodala | String and Things | Skin as Ground... | more INDONESIAN MASKS: Bali and Java | Dyak

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Melanesian art TOC | Map of art areas of Melanesia
Papua New Guinea: Highlands: body art - Bundi tapa - jewelry/dancers | Karawari and Blackwater Rivers: masks - carvings - map | Massim: artifacts- Trobriand Kula - map | Kula canoe | New Britain: Baining - Sulka - Tolai dukduk | New Ireland: Malagan | Ramu River: masks - carvings - map | Sepik River: masks - carvings - villages - map | Papuan Gulf: masks - carvings - map - Gogodala - Kukukuku
other areas: Asmat | Solomon Islands: crafts - jewelry - map
art and craft:
barkcloth (tapa) | body art | cane and fiber figures | canoes and prows | jewelry/dancers | masks - Middle Sepik | phallocrypts | pottery - Chambri | shields | story boards | suspension hooks | weapons | yam masks - fiber | yam masks - wood

Indonesian art TOC | Dyak baby carriers and masks | furniture | Java folk art | Lombok baskets | Lombok lontar boxes | masks from Bali and Java | puppets

China: Bai textiles/art TOC | baby carriers | baby hats | woodblock prints

Collecting New Guinea art in the field since 1964.

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Artifacts on this site were collected in the field by my husband, Ron Perry. I take the photographs, do the html, text and maps. Background in Who We Are. Art-Pacific has been on the WWW since 1996. We hope you enjoy our New Guinea tribal art and Indonesian folk art as much as we do. by Carolyn Leigh is licensed under Creative Commons CC BY-ND 4.0