This maquette is a visualisation of the dual meanings held by the shield
to the Asmat people. Their shields were essential tools for protection in
warfare, an object that created a divide between the Asmat people and
others. However, in recent times their shields have attracted the interest
of outsiders due to their rarity and beauty. The shield has become a
piece that connects them with the world. In this way, the shield has
developed dual meanings.
The six footprints, with ambiguous directions, express the Asmat people’s
history and the interference from outsiders, as well as the difficulty in
determining whether this has led to progression or regression. Their
relationship with civilisation has led to advancements and cultural
loss, aid and interference, all of which are two sides of the same coin.