An image of Aenkiya nuw (plaited rattan bag)

Unknown Artist

Aenkiya nuw (plaited rattan bag)

Other titles:
Billum bag, carried by old men, Woven cane bag, Aenkiya nuw (Cane-bamboo bag), Haeriya nuw (Cane-bamboo bag), Tog nuw (Peeled-off bag)
Not on display
Further information

The 'aenkiya nuw' was carried by Wola men during dances and ceremonial exchanges, and was used to carry tobacco pipes and other accessories. It is plaited from fine strips of rattan, giving it a rigid form. The seams and
straps were sourced from old string bags obtained from female relatives. The netting required many hours of repair before it could be stitched to the woven sheet.

A new 'aenkiya nuw' took up to 11 hours to complete, and decorations might include an edging of pigs' tails, or lengths of plaited chain links, known as 'pubung'. This 'aenkiya nuw', collected by Stan Moriarty in 1969, has an exquisitely delicate surface with subtle nuances of colour and tone throughout the weave.

[Exhibition text for 'Plumes and pearlshells: art of the New Guinea highlands', AGNSW, 2014]

Place of origin
Nipa, Nipa-Kutubu District, Southern Highlands Province, Papua New Guinea
Cultural origin
Wola people
early 20th century
collected 1969
plaited split rattan, looped plant-fibre string strap and side seams
33.0 x 24.2 x 3.8 cm plaited bag; 54.0 x 7.5 cm strap :
0 - Whole; 33 x 24.2 x 3.8 cm; plaited bag, without strap
0 - Whole; 54 cm; looped string strap
0 - Whole; 7.5 cm; looped string strap
Purchased 1977
Accession number
© Wola people, under the endorsement of the Pacific Islands Museums Association's (PIMA) Code of Ethics