Title:  Manu Tukutuku – Kōkako Pendant

Artist:  Wendy Whitehead – Toi Iho Registered Artist

Iwi:  Ngāti Porou

Materials:  Pure and sterling silver, South Westland Pounamu, Harakeke, Muka, copper wire, anodised copper wire, feathers, polyester thread

Description:  Contemporary Māori pendant. 

Artist Statement:  Kites, or manu tukutuku, have always played an important role in Māori culture, particularly during the winter season when they were flown to signify the start of Matariki, the Māori New Year.  Our tūpuna flew kites for recreation, but also to communicate with other hapū as well as a means to communicate with those who had passed on, connecting heaven and earth.

Artist Note:  Due to the fragility of the feathers and tukutuku, panel should be worn keeping this in mind.  If necessary the artist will offer one replacement of the feathers.


Wendy Whitehead

Nō Ngāti Porou a Wendy. At this point in her creative journey, Wendy best describes herself as a multimedia small sculpture/body adornment artist. She is predominantly a jewellery maker working with metals, stones, fibre, wood and more. She is also a tutor, designer and photographer. Precious NZ indigenous resources such as pounamu, harakeke, pāua and kauri gum are some of her favourite media. Wendy’s most expressive form is pared down symbolism using finely balanced media choices to convey intention with the understanding that great design can slide across media, size and time. Wendy is inspired by her life, culture, knowledge and interactions. She also has a healthy interest in how things go together. These all form the basis of her creativity. She aspires to create fantastic pieces that honour those that have supported her to achieve.


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