Theodore Bevan Papuan Gulf Collection



Offline Only


Exhibits at the 1887 Queen's Jubilee Exhibition in Adelaide, purchased by the South Australian Museum. c.90 objects, mostly from the eastern Papuan Gulf region of Papua New Guinea. Includes carved and painted cult objects, masks, musical instruments, weapons, fishing equipment, body ornaments, containers, etc.

Researched by Barry Craig; publication pending (late 2010): 'Scenes hidden from other eyes' - Theodore Bevan's collection from the Gulf of Papua in the South Australian Museum. The Artefact. About half the collection has been positively identified and photographed and has been on exhibit in the South Australian Museum for at least 100 years. Bevan published an account of his experiences in British New Guinea (Papua) in 1890: Toil, Travel and Discovery in British New Guinea. Masks in this collection are from first contact between 'European' explorers and the inland Namau of the Purari Delta. Related External Collections: A 'sister' collection from Bevan's 1887 'Victory' expedition is in the National Museum of Ireland, Dublin, and a few pieces are in the Macleay Museum, University of Sydney. Archival material (including photographs) is held in the Royal Geographical Society in London and the Mitchell Library in Sydney.


Anthropological specimens; Containers; Masks; Musical instruments; Personal adornments; Weapons

Artefacts; Body adornments and alterations; Exhibits; Fishing; Indigenous peoples; Musical instruments

Ethnographic; Papuan Gulf; Queen's Jubilee Exhibition; Theodore Bevan

Ethnology; Indigenous artefacts

Theodore Bevan

Coverage Spatial

Gulf Province, Papua New Guinea.; Elema villages, Papua New Guinea; Vailala, Papua New Guinea; Orokolo, Papua New Guinea; Motu Motu, Papua New Guinea; Kikori River, Papua New Guinea

Coverage Temporal


Related Collections


2012-05-30 23:41

2011-03-18 17:37