Shield

About the object

»Gope« spirit boards depict stylised faces. They embody a guardian spirit that protects the group or clan. They are usually stored in the men's house, either placed on the ground or hung up using a piece of string. This board has an eyelet at the top for a string attachment. The smiling face is framed by ornaments that represent the headdress of dancers. On this board, the sublimely carved nose has been broken off. Also, the lower grip or handle section has been adorned with paint. The presence of a circle is nice to see - an essential element in the design of spirit boards, which, upon closer inspection, is present in all of the boards. It can represent the navel of the depicted spirit, but it is also possible that it is the spirit's »entrance portal« into the board which he inhabits.

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