VIRTUAL COLLECTION OF ASIAN MASTERPIECES

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Man’s winter clothes – parka (anorak)
2709-1
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Why this is a
Masterpiece

The cut of this parka is a vivid example of the realization of the concept of identity of the micro- and macrocosm. When a man put on such clothes made of a whole skin, his body sort of became identical to the body of the mythical animal that embodied the Universe. The ornament that is full of symbolic meanings reflecting the world of people and the Cosmos serves the same end. The protective pattern was placed along the hem, on the sleeves, on the shoulders and around the neck, thus guarding the person who wore this parka against evil forces. At the same time, it symbolized the cosmic order and the repetitive cosmic movement.

History of the Object
This is a piece of winter clothes called parka of the Mansi - an Ugrian people. This parka is made of two deer skins sewn together with fur on the outside. The back is cut as a single piece together with the hood which is made of the skin from a deer head. It has the ears, while the horn and eye holes are stitched up. The parka is decorated with ornamental insets made in the fur mosaics technique and fringed with multi-color cloth. Such parkas were worn in the winter over other pieces of clothes (malitsa) worn fur inside. This parka originates from the ancient types of clothes of the peoples of northern Asia which were made of whole deer skins. Such cut was used until the 20th century in the traditional costumes of the Evenk people and shaman outfits of many Siberian peoples. It was defined by the ancient beliefs about the mythical deer that embodied the sun, the reviving nature and even the Universe.

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Type
Costume and Jewelry 
Materials
reindeer fur 
Measurements
Width 108 cm Length 148 cm  
Creator name
Unknown 
Creator date
Unknown 
Where it was made
Khanty-Mansiysk region; Ob river region 
Geography
Russia 
Time period
AD 19th century ~ AD 19th century 
Creation date
19th Century 
Function
Winter cloths 
Acquisition
The parka was received by the Museum in the 1920s as a result of an expedition to Siberia, to the Ob River Basin. 
Copyright
Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) RAS 
Acknowledgements
 
Owner
Russian Federation 
Museum
Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) Russian Academy of Sciences 
Credit line
 

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