- Registration number
- Item name
- Indigenous name
- Associated cultural group
- Pacific > Papua New Guinea > New Ireland Province > Namatanai District > Panatgin Village
- Dr Elizabeth Brouwer
- Acquisition date
- January 01, 1976
- Acquisition method
- Commissioned by Dr Elizabeth Brouwer
- Raw material
- bamboo; coconut shells; vine
- H: 370 mm W: 190 mm L: D: 290 mm Circum:
Two rows of coconut half shells (16 in total) strung on to a circular bamboo 'handle' bound by vine (300 mm x 350 mm).
From the UQ Anthropology Museum exhibition 'Musical Landscapes of Lihir' March - August 2013, curated by Dr Kirsty Gillespie and the Lihir Cultural Heritage Association with Dr Diana Young.
Musical Landscapes of Lihir exhibition label: Shark rattle, c. 1970s. To summon a shark the caller submerges the rattle into the water, pulling it up and down violently, mimicking the commotion of schools of fish that attract the shark.
Preparation for shark calling usually takes place at a clan’s sacred site. Invoking the power and support of their masalai or clan spirit, shark callers avoid contact with women for a period of 48 hours, sing ritual songs the night before, and avoid alcohol and introduced foods such as rice and tinned fish as it is seen to lessen the efficacy of their power.