Title: Pāua Hue
Artist: Hinauri Mead
Iwi: Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Awa
Description: Pāua Mixed Media Sculpture
Fashioned in the shape of a hue (gourd) this piece is mostly structured from Pāua shell and metal wire.
‘Ka kite a Matariki, maoka ko te hinu’.
During Matariki, hue were used to preserve food in mostly bird fat (hinu) and were highly prized as rich mineral sourced kai for the cold months ahead. Hinepūtehue was revered for this reason, her versatility and ability to adapt to any given situation especially during times of war and conflict. Goddess of musical instruments made of gourds, Hinepūtehue had the superpower of a pacifier. Amongst a war of the Gods’ Hinepūtehue absorbed all the pain and anger of her siblings, creating a song that she then sang along with other wind instruments. In doing so, she calmed the world into a beautiful state of peace prompting her siblings to lay their arms down.
The use of Pāua, is symbolic during Matariki. Waitā and Waipunarangi, two other daughters of Matariki, spend one whole month embellishing their tupuna kuia, Papatūānuku, before rising again and travelling the skies.
Waitā is the star connected to the many kinds of food Māori gather from Tangaroa and Hinemoana, the sea. Waipunarangi is connected to rain. Waipunarangi accompanies her grandmother to the waters – the oceans, lakes, rivers, streams and creeks where she prepares the children of Tangaroa, god of the sea, to feed the people.
Dimensions: Approximately 400 x 250 x 250 mm