Traditional Sculpture and Carving of Sumba

Carved fence post

As we mentioned in our posts on the megalithic tombs and the unique tribal villages of Sumba, incredible artistic talent is woven into every aspect of Sumbanese daily life. During our motorbike adventure around the island, I was drawn to the phenomenal sculpture and carvings that we discovered on our trip. These are not objects in a museum, but rather religious idols, fence posts, and carved architectural elements we discovered in the compounds of everyday people we met along the way. Unfortunately, while such art is still relatively common in Sumba, collectors are taking their toll as these treasures are being carried off to art houses in Bali, Yogyakarta, Jakarta and beyond.

Carved hut columns

Traditional roof carvings

Carved fence post on cattle pen

Carved idol at hut entrance

Carved fence post on cattle pen

2 responses to “Traditional Sculpture and Carving of Sumba”

  1. avatar John Palov says:

    I have a couple of Sumba carvings that I bought in Bali 10 years ago. I have been thinking of selling them but I am not sure about it because they are so unique. But I might since I have someone inquiring now. Can I send you pictures to get your opinion?
    John Palov

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