the symbol and spirit of Aotearoa
Manu (birds) are significant kaitiaki (guardians) for Māori. Kiwi are NZ’s most recognisable bird. Of chiefly status, the solitary guardian and nocturnal wanderer, its high sharp “peep peep” is recognisable in the bush at night. Endangered and precious to our culture and our country, a kiwi is an iconic and meaningful gift.
Unaunahi is a pattern associated with the moana (ocean) and Tangaroa (God of the sea). As such, it alludes to the traditions of navigation, the stars, and customary fishing practices. This can then be extended to symbolise wisdom and expertise in any area, because of the years of study and dedication it takes to develop any body of knowledge. A work adorned with this pattern is particularly suited to someone who is graduating with a qualification, being given a promotion, or retiring after long service. It’s also perfect for anyone with a strong connection to the sea, fishing, swimming, or surfing.
This style is a contemporary interpretation of a rich traditional cultural icon. The form and shape, while modern, are achieved through the use of traditional tools and practices. The artist uses chisel and mallet, not sandpaper, to create the smooth surface and clean lines. Each piece is uniquely hand carved.