Nias – The Island of Ancestors and Myths Provided by Goout

Today, Permanent

Náprstek Museum of Asian, African and American Cultures Betlémské náměstí 1, Praha 1

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Exhibition shows the special characteristics of the Indonesian island of Nias. It provides profound information on material culture of Indonesian island of Nias. The aim of the exhibition is to show the special characteristics of the Indonesian island of Nias, where life did not change for many centuries and was still the same when Pavel Durdík visited the island in the 80´s of the 19th century.

Pavel Durdík served in the Netherlands Colonial Army (KNIL – Koninklijk Nederlandsch Indisch Leger) as a medical doctor till 1882. His work enabled him to study life and culture of Nias people. Thanks to his long termed stay and personal contacts with local tribes he managed to complete outstanding collection, the main value of which lies in its coherent and authentic quality reflecting all life aspects of people.

Through single displayed items various aspects of local living conditions including everyday life, gaining food supplies, educating children, producing all sorts of utensils, settling war affairs and performing religious rites will be explained and demonstrated, as they formed inseparable part of island living conditions in the second half of the 19th century.