This Museum Quality Set was acquired on my first trip to Borneo about a decade ago. It led me into the journey of discovery and delight into the lifestyle arts of the Borneo.
Noblewoman's wedding ceremonial skirt [kain manik] early 20th century.
Worn on ceremonial occasions by members of the local elite, the valuable garments symbolise prosperity, fertility and abundance. People believe that the more beads displayed, the greater the rice harvest will be.
A prerogative of the ruling families, prestigious motifs include dragon-serpents, slaves and heirloom Indian trade cloth patterns.
The color of the beads on the skirt is slightly different from the color of the beads on the Jacket. The cloth has faded in some parts. Good condition.
1. "Hornbill and Dragon" focusing on the material culture of Borneo's tribes.
2. "The Traditional Costume of Sabah"
The book has photos and drawings showing the costumes worn by seven of Sabah's tribes, including the Dusun and Maloh (Sabah is located at the northernmost tip of Borneo).
Powerhouse Museum, Sydney
This item has spent a lifetime being used for the purpose of its creation with the original artist/user. Signs of this life lived heartily may be present on the piece in the form of stains, thread loss, loose threads, holes, tears, color run and other imperfections. Therefore the condition must be assumed to be “not” perfect. More photos of such imperfections will be provided on request.