Portrait of Michael O’Hanlon by the Wahgi shield decorator and part-time signwriter Kaipel Ka.
Honorary Research Associate
Professor Michael O’Hanlon was Director of the Pitt Rivers Museum from 1998 until his retirement in 2015. A historian and later anthropologist by training, he undertook long-term fieldwork with the Wahgi people in highland Papua New Guinea. Following his appointment as assistant keeper at the British Museum, his interests expanded to include museology and the history of collecting. Previous books include 'Reading the Skin: adornment, display and society among the Wahgi' (1989), 'Paradise: portraying the New Guinea Highlands' (1993) and 'The Pitt Rivers Museum: a world within' (2014), as well as the co-edited volumes 'The Anthropology of Landscape' (1995), 'Hunting the Gatherers' (2000) and 'Body Arts and Modernity' (2007).