Collingwood Bay Spatula

  • Title
    Collingwood Bay spatula
  • Location
    Collingwood Bay
  • Size
    7cm (W) x 33cm (H)
  • Price
    $950.00

The objects of Collingwood Bay are distinctively minimalist by design.  This occurrence  is partly explained in “Art of Massim and Collingwood Bay ” by Aldridge and Hamson by the fact that “there is no formalized ancestor worship and thus no tradition of figurative sculpture. What you have is a society based upon hereditary chiefs and a strong almost magical importance given to the chewing of betel nut.  In this context spatulas have risen to the height of cultural significance. There is no other single object that garners as much respect , that is both feared and coveted, or that has anywhere near the same power , both magical and symbolic as a lime spatula.”

The exact meaning of the design and form of the spatula is not fully understood.  It is accepted that the designs are similar to a  clan emblem.  Some believe the downward spikes of the spatula represent the open mouth of a bushbird. These very minimalist designs are even more remarkable when you consider Collingwood Bay is geographically next to the Massim cultural group, who are renowned for there very complex intricate figurative, and abstract spatulas.

This example was collected by David Baker.  It is of the classic Oro province style.  With a raised central ridge and opposing triangle motif.  The surface shows good signs of wear and usage.   Circa early to mid 20th century

The spatula includes a custom metal stand

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The objects of Collingwood Bay are distinctively minimalist by design.  This occurrence  is partly explained in “Art of Massim and Collingwood Bay ” by Aldridge and Hamson by the fact that “there is no formalized ancestor worship and thus no tradition of figurative sculpture. What you have is a society based upon hereditary chiefs and a strong almost magical importance given to the chewing of betel nut.  In this context spatulas have risen to the height of cultural significance. There is no other single object that garners as much respect , that is both feared and coveted, or that has anywhere near the same power , both magical and symbolic as a lime spatula.”

The exact meaning of the design and form of the spatula is not fully understood.  It is accepted that the designs are similar to a  clan emblem.  Some believe the downward spikes of the spatula represent the open mouth of a bushbird. These very minimalist designs are even more remarkable when you consider Collingwood Bay is geographically next to the Massim cultural group, who are renowned for there very complex intricate figurative, and abstract spatulas.

This example was collected by David Baker.  It is of the classic Oro province style.  With a raised central ridge and opposing triangle motif.  The surface shows good signs of wear and usage.   Circa early to mid 20th century

The spatula includes a custom metal stand