The Asmat

A Calling, A Task

Dutch New Guinea | 1959-1962

Tales about the Former Dutch Colonie, Asmat Tribes, Human Cannibalism,
Primitive Art and the misterious disappearence of Michael Rockefeller.

Wim van de Waal

The Book Title „A CALLING, A TASK“ was written by Wim

After his retirement and several years of reflection, Wim van de Waal decided to write a book over his memories and his experiences in the former Dutch New Guinea, where he spent more than 3 years of his lifetime between 1959-1962.

This book over the Asmat has been written primarily for his family, friends and acquaintances. The high repercussion that „A Calling, A Task“ has awakened led to its official publication in the Netherlands. The book was released in 2018.

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„This book wants to be an ode to the Papuan people as a whole and the people of the Asmat in particular. I lived with them for two years and cherish wonderful, irremovable memories of that time. The experiences there have made me a more tolerant person and my memories have kept alive in me the admiration for a people who, with their knowledge of nature, have no reason to be envious of our digitalised world."

Wim van de Waal

The Asmat

The Asmat „People of the trees“ belongs to a characteristic ethnic group of the Island of Papua (Former West New Guinea).

Wim describes their lifestyle, customs, culture and feasts in detail, without forgetting the cannibal habits in this region.

Photo Gallery

This section represenets a web showcase of 40 original pics of Wim’s photo collection throughout his stay in Papua.

The Pirimapun village, the casuarina coast, as well as other landscapes in the interior of Asmat are shown.

Michael Rockefeller

Young Michael Rockefeller disappeared in tragic circumstances off the Casuarina Coast after he capsized at sea with his catamaran.

Wim van de Waal participated in the expedition of search in the Asmat jungle, finding evidences of Michaels tragic fate.