This carved wood bust inlaid with mother of pearl shell is a musu musu or nguzunguzu - an ornament placed on the prow of a war canoe. It is intended to provide protection from wave and wind spirits and to pilot the crew through difficult waters. When used, the ornament would be lashed to the bow of the canoe just above the waterline.
Size 17 inches H. Intact.
Carvings of this kind were typically painted black before being inlaid with shell designs which mirrored the face-paint of a warrior. They are distinctive for their anthropomorphic forms with protruding mouths and elongated ear lobes. Since the mid-twentieth century they have been made in large numbers for the tourist market and many like this example are stunning.
All pieces are unconditionally guaranteed authentic and as described in perpetuity and have been legally acquired and imported in full accordance with U.S. and applicable foreign regulations regarding the movement and sale of antiquities.
A signed guarantee of authenticity with a description and photograph of the item(s) accompanies this object.
We ship Tuesday to Friday with UPS or USPS and usually same day if your order is received before 2pm. Depending on size and destination, delivery times range from one to five business days.
For overseas shipments our shipping charge includes packing, preparation of all customs paperwork, insurance and carrier fees in compliance with all USA and International customs requirements.
Overseas shipments are usually sent by courier but contact us if you have a shipping preference. International customers are responsible for all duties and taxes.