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This very charming carved wooden stopper is carved as a tiger-type animal standing astride an oval platform, the front of which is carved with a demon mask.
The tiger has been carved with teeth bared.
Such stoppers were used to close bamboo containers that held powdered lime that was an integral part of the betel quid.
A related stopper is illustrated in Schoffel (1981, p. 150).
The wood has a beautiful black-brown patina. There are plenty of signs of age and use: there is a shrinkage-related split down one side, and fritting to the details of the stopper.
It comes with a high-quality custom-made metal stand.
Schoffel, A., Arts Primitifs de l’Asie du Sud-Est (Assam, Sumatra, Borneo, Philippines): Collection Alain Schoffel, Alain et Francoise Chaffin, 1981.