Superb and Rare Neckrest, Tongan Islands
length 20 1/2in (52cm)
Alan Mann, London
Frits Schmidt, London
Mark and Carolyn Blackburn, Honolulu, Hawaii
Kaeppler, Adrienne, The Mark and Carolyn Blackburn Collection of Polynesian Art, (2010: fig. 149)
Carved from one piece of wood in classic shallow M form with bowed sides curving inward with bowed rest, the sides tapering slightly inwards from the feet; extremely fine and smooth dark-brown patina.
According to Kaeppler (2011: p 246), "During the nineteenth century, a curved one-piece form known as hahapo became popular and is still in use today. Two early depictions of hahapo are in the plates of Tongan artifacts from the visit of Bruny d'Entrecasteaux in 1793 and Dumont d'Urville in 1829. Hahapo are sometimes described as neckrests in a continuous shallow M form because of a vague resemblance to the letter M."