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With a population of 30,000, the Abelam inhabit the Maprik district north of the Sepik River. Their mountainous land is dominated by thick tropical forests and the people live of the land as farmers, hunters, and gatherers. One of the more outstanding characteristics of the Abelam is the manner in which authority is given. The men who cultivate the longest yams in their community hold the most prestige. Abelam art distinguishes itself from the other art forms of the Sepik region by its strong emphasis on color (as seen with the red, yellow, black, and white utilized on the men’s house). Painting for the Abelam is a highly spiritual activity.