Nukuoro Atoll Coconut Stool
Caroline Islands, Micronesia
Coconut stools were used on the tiny atoll of Nukuoro for the preparation of coconuts. Commonly the stool was merely a log with a sharpened shell bound to one end but occasionally a sculptural form such as this was sculpted. The stool was straddled and the flesh of the nut was shredded using the blade formed from the shell which was bound to the 'head' of the stool.
The staple diet of the population, numbering only a few hundred, is fish supplemented mainly with breadfruit and the coconut is used as a flavouring for most dishes.
length 69 cm width 35.25 cm height 53.5 cm (27 x 14 x 21 in)
French private collection
Polynesian Art by Edward Dodd, pub. Robert Hale & Company London 1969
Arts of the South Seas, The Collections of the Musee Barbier Mueller, pub. Prestel 1999
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