Female ancestor figure (Ana Deo)

CULTURE:
Nage people
DATE:
late 19th–early 20th century
more object details

General Description

In central Flores, ancestor sculptures play significant roles in the religious life of the commu­nity, serving as points of contact between the living and the dead. Ancestors are closely associated with the daily lives of all living descendants and must be respected and honored to maintain order. A reciprocal relationship exists between ancestors and their descendants. The ancestors depend on the living to feed and honor them, while the living need ancestral guidance and blessings. Together, this couple bends down ever so slightly, their heels rising accordingly; they extend their open palms, in either supplication or benediction.

Adapted from

  • 'Pair of ancestor figures (ana deo),' in Dallas Museum of Art: A Guide to the Collection, ed. Bonnie Pitman (Dallas: Dallas Museum of Art; New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2012), 122.

  • George Ellis, "Pair of male and female ancestor figures (ana deo)," in Eyes of the Ancestors: The Arts of Island Southeast Asia at the Dallas Museum of Art, ed. Reimar Schefold in collaboration with Steven Alpert (Dallas: Dallas Museum of Art; New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2013), 238.