Collection Online

Diwaka (Drum)
(c. 1970)

earth pigments on wood, wallaby skin, bamboo, cane, resin
183.8 × 18.0 cm diameter
Place/s of Execution
Kini village, Western Province, Papua New Guinea
Accession Number
Pacific Art
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through The Art Foundation of Victoria by Elizabeth Pryce, Member, 2000
© the artist
This digital record has been made available on NGV Collection Online through the generous support of The Vizard Foundation
Gallery location
Not on display
The diwaka was one of the most special drums of the Gogodala people and was only beaten during the Aida and Gi Maiyata ceremonies. When not in use it was stored in the Aida sacred loft and, in former times, was kept out of sight from females and uninitiated males. The diwaka is never owned by an individual but is the property of the clan. Although it is generally accepted that these drums were mainly used for the Aida and Gi Maiyata ceremonies, some have also described their function as being used for the tribal call to war and maybe, for this reason, the drum is also known as the 'Bamu War Drum'.