Title:  Nine Notches For Nine Stars

Artist:  Erihapeti McPherson

Iwi:  Kāi Tahu, Kati Mamoe, Kotimana

Materials:  Pounamu, waxed adjustable cord

Description:  Pounamu Necklace

Each notch on this Pounamu is one of the stars of the Matariki constellation. For some iwi, the Matariki constellation is made up of 9 stars ‘Te Iwa o Matariki’ – Matariki, Tupuārangi, Tupuānuku, Waipunarangi, Waitī, Waitā, Ururangi, Hiwaiterangi and Pōhutukawa according to Ahorangi Rangi Mātāmua (Ngāi Tūhoe).  

  1. Matariki (Alcyone) – the mother of the other stars in the constellation.  Rēhua (Antares) is the father but is not considered part of the Matariki constellation.
  2. Pōhutukawa – connects Matariki to the dead and is the star that carries loved ones across the year (Sterope/Asterope).
  3. Tupuānuku – is the kaitiaki of food that grows in the ground (Pleione).
  4. Tupuārangi – is the kaitiaki of food that comes from above your head such as birds, fruit and nuts (Atlas).
  5. Waitī – is the kaitiaki of food that comes from freshwater (Maia).
  6. Waitā – is the kaitiaki of food that comes from saltwater (Taygeta).
  7. Waipunarangi – is connected to the domain of Hineteihorangi where rain is created (Electra).
  8. Ururangi – is from the domain of Tāwhirimātea, connected to the winds (Merope).
  9. Hiwaiterangi, Hiwa the wishing star for short – is the youngest star in the cluster, the star you send your wishes to (Celaeno).

Length:  85 mm


Erihapeti McPherson

Erihapeti is of Kāi Tahu, Kāti Māmoe and Kotimana descent. She lives in Golden Bay, Te Tai Tapu, and has a strong relationship with the local hapū. She is a prolific artist and works with many different mediums. She lets herself be guided by her dreams and visions, and her creation process. All of her natural resources are collected with the blessing of the local Mohua hapū.


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