The 1950s and 1960s was a time of major rebuilding for the museum. New collections were purchased and piece by piece the museum was slowly rebuilt. The museum had received a War Damage Fund that allowed the curators to rebuild the collections in new ways that were different from the collecting procedures used before the Blitz.
Many objects like this mask from Papua New Guinea were bought for the ethnology collections from art dealers. This method of collecting was not without its own problems.
It was not always clear exactly where the objects had come from or how they had been used. We still research the collections today, so we can understand how objects, which arrived without a history, were made, used and valued.