Particular to the Toraja culture in South Sulawesi (Celebes) in Indonesia, Tau-Tau (Tau means Man, so Tau Tau means Men or Statue) are representatives of the deceased and can usually be found guarding the tomb. These funereal figurines, originating in the 19th century, were originally endowed with some riches as it is believed that the deceased could bring their worldly wealth to the next life. As a result, they became target for grave robbers and had to be hidden or protected with metal fences around them.
Each Tau Tau is handmade and is therefore unique. No two Tau Taus are alike, except in the color of the garments.
These figurines are the miniature version of the original Tau Tau. They measure around 3" with a diameter of around 1".