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National Museum of Australia

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Head ornament

Object information

Physical description

Cotton fabric headband, with sides folded under to form a double band. The anterior surface is painted with non-figurative motifs, and an explanation is written in pencil on the posterior surface. The motifs consist of dots arranged in curved lines intercepted by horizontal lines.

Statement of significance

The Olive Pink collection comprises 108 Aboriginal artefacts, mainly weapons, wooden containers and ceremonial objects.

Olive Pink was one of Australia's earliest university-trained female anthropologists. Working in central Australia with Arrernte and Warlpiri people between 1933 and 1936, Pink was to publish two papers on Arrernte culture, the second in 1936, but soon after fell foul of her anthropological colleagues and this effectively ended this part of her career. She continued to work with Aboriginal people in central Australia, however. She retired to Alice Springs where she died in 1975. The artefacts in the Olive Pink collection are believed to be largely from her fieldwork period in the 1930s.

Object information

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