This male and female pair represents the ancestral couple. The figures were likely clothed, and the stems of wood on the top of the heads probably once supported turban-like headdresses. They were preserved and honored in the uppermost region of the house of the lineage founder, where they could be seen or touched only by a privileged few. Periodic offerings and solicitations encouraged benevolent behavior from the ancestral couple, who were capable of inflicting harm. This pair was acquired from descendants of the last priest-king of the Toba Batak people, whose defeat and death in 1907 marked the end of Batak resistance to Dutch colonialism. MALE AND FEMALE ANCESTOR FIGURES; Indonesia, North Sumatra, Lake Toba region, Toba Batak people; 19th century or earlier; Wood


You May Also Like