- Registration number
- Item name
- Carved figure
- Indigenous name
- Associated cultural group
- Pacific > Papua New Guinea > Milne Bay Province
- Mr W. Cottrell-Dormer
- Acquisition date
- January 01, 1974
- Acquisition method
- Donated by Mr W. Cottrell-Dormer
- Raw material
- wood; commercial paint
- H: 570 mm W: 200 mm L: D: Circum:
Carved wood male figure on round base; figure has one hand on hip and wears white, red and black clothing and holds a teacup.
From the UQ Anthropology Museum exhibitions 'In the Red; on the vibrancy of things' 2012 and 'What do Objects want? The face of humanity in the UQ Anthropology Museum' 2012.
In the Red exhibition label: Carved figure of tea boy with cup. Portraying a part of life in Papua New Guinea before Independence in 1975, these figures – a native policeman , a prisoner  and a tea boy with buai (betel nut) stained teeth were regular characters in the policing of what was still then, a largely unexplored country.
‘This character depicts a male servant performing duties of a ‘cook boy’ in a government official’s house. A white clean T/Shirt represents that he is employed to serve a white man. I believe the most important representation the artist is trying to convey is, the job of a cook is a ‘female’ job. So the artist in a very subtle way, introduce that idea by plaiting the hair of the cook boy and adorns him with a tattoo, both signifiers of female body adornment’ [Alphonse Yambisang].