Carved Sarimonok (Sacred Rooster), Phillippines
Maranao culture. Mindanao Island, Philippines.
H: 48" (122 cm), L: 36" (91.4 cm), W: 50" (127 cm).
Early to mid 20th century.
According to the folk belief of the Maranao people, coming from their current Islamic traditions, the Sarimonok represents a giant rooster which the Profit Mohammad encountered in heaven. It likely relates to a pre-Islamic tradition that the bird figure represents a medium that could communicate messages to its twin in the spirit world. Today, this folk tradition is no longer widespread, but the Sarimanok is celebrated as a symbol of the Maranao people, often displayed at public events. This assemblage is the largest example that I am aware of and in very good condition.
On offer from Mark A. Johnson Tribal Art, California, at the 2018 San Francisco Tribal & Textile art show