Sacred textile (sarita)
- Sa'dan Toraja peoples
- Late 19th–early 20th century
The design on this textile is dense with symbolic elements, each laden with meaning that represents hopes and prayers for wealth and prosperity. Two armed warriors appear in the center section. One rides a horse, while the other is accompanied by a fierce miniature goat-like animal that is known as an anoa and is only found on the island of Sulawesi. The ends of this sarita illustrate field scenes with prized buffalo. The figures above them are set in rows of ribbed, fishbone-like patterns called pa’buku pana, “the backbone of eels,” which signify the strength and aristocratic bearing of this cloth’s owner.
Roslyn A. Walker, Label text, 2013.