central Nias, Indonesia
Nobleman's seat of honour
[osa osa si sara mbagi]
19th century or earlier
128.0 (h) x 77.5 (w) x 112.0 (d) cm
Asian Civilisations Museum, Singapore
The Nias people hold a complex cycle of feasts which members of the local nobility host to maintain and enhance their social status. The feasts are the impetus for the creation of large stone monuments and seats commissioned by both noblemen and women. This throne was created for a feast of merit [owasa] that celebrates the patron’s assumption of higher rank. It takes the form of a lasara bird-tailed dragon-headed creature. The lasara is a protective beast associated with creation myths and the underworld.