Burmese Ox Cart Prow Decorations
Travel for work and pleasure was by ox cart in Burma & other Southeast Asian countries for centuries. Festival carts were always decorated elaborately. Ox Cart races have also been a beloved sport. Burma has a long tradition of decorating its bullock carts with wonderful sculpture that reflects its culture and mythology. Most carts would have folk-art carving attached to the prow of the cart. The purpose of these teak carvings was the protection of the cart's passengers as well as being a pointer, responsible for guiding the cart. Some were very simple in design, others extremely intricate. Typically they were hand-painted in bright colors, matching the colorful painting of the carts themselves.
When I first started importing from Asia, I would see ox carts on the streets along with bicycles, motorcycles & cars, but now 37 years later, they are now in the past. I collected these ox cart prow ornaments over these many years. They are now rare and the delight of many collectors.