20th century, 1950–2000
Artist unknown, Pacific Islander, Artist Unidentified, Pacific Islander

Object Place: Fiji


Overall: 100 x 23.5 x 7 cm (39 3/8 x 9 1/4 x 2 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Wood, plaited coconut fiber cord

Not On View


Africa and Oceania, Contemporary Art


Arms and armor

Eighteenth-century explorers such as Captain James Cook collected weapons made and used by Pacific islanders. For such travelers the clubs were exotic curiosities. Then, in the late nineteenth century, anthropologists studied such clubs as cultural artifacts. Since the 1930s, their purity of shape, ingenuity of form, and attractive patina have increasingly attracted attention to the clubs as works of art.


white label typed glued on handle: "CLUB Fiji"; paper typed and taped to handle:"Fiji, gata or gunstock club"


1978, sold by Oceanie-Afrique Noir (OAN) Gallery, New York, to Geneviève McMillan (b. 1922 - d. 2008), Cambridge, MA; 2008, to the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation, Cambridge; 2009, gift of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Foundation to the MFA. (Accession Date: June 17, 2009)

Credit Line

Gift of Geneviève McMillan in memory of Reba Stewart