This tiki is a fantastic showcase of skilled jade carving - a beautiful piece of stone, a creative design with roots in tradition and wonderful craftsmanship.
Carved from a piece of top quality New Zealand jade for us by Alex Sands.
Tiki have a long history in New Zealand and have been carved and worn by Māori for many generations. Their significance is deep-seated, they are culturally important pieces and are one of the most difficult designs to carve by hand. Every piece will have a story sitting behind its creation, and over time, a story behind its ownership and meaning to the family that owns the taonga.
Many tiki become heirlooms. They are treasured for the connections that they form with family ancestors, they are treated like a revered family member and respected for their spiritual presence.
ESPIRITU'S design is largely traditional, but with a little creative license that gives it a singular relevance to our little corner of the world. The traditional elements are - an angled head, deep set eyes, a raised central ridge beneath the head representing the neck, and a touch that I particularly like - a little inverted v carved into the chest to represent the sternum - and hands braced on the thighs. This piece also has a forked tongue which is not commonly seen. I have a book which refers to this particular design feature which has been seen in some very old tiki.
This is a medium sized tiki - carved from gorgeous New Zealand pounamu. The craftsmanship is superb, look closely at the photos and the video and you will see detail that perhaps isn't evident at first glance. The jade is a beautiful dark colour with little pale inclusions - this is a 'one only' piece that will grace someone's collection or make a fantastic piece to wear daily.
A LITTLE ABOUT THE TIKI....
The tiki is a well recognised symbol in Maori culture, but also has historical roots in Hawaiian and wider Polynesian cultures. It is believed to symbolise fertility, and was often worn by women who believed that it would promote fertility. Pregnant women wore tiki to promote a healthy and easy birth. They would wear the piece during the birth - and recite karakia, prayers, to the tiki asking for assistance in the birth of their child. Its form is believed to represent a human embryo, often carved with the hands placed on the loins in what is believed to be a direct reference to fertility.
These pendants were traditionally highly valued and wearers were seen to possess clarity of thought, loyalty, great inner knowledge and strength of character.
The tiki is believed by some to have come from the stars, and was regarded as the 'first man'. He was (and still is) believed to have a positive influence on fertility, and to bring the wearer good luck.
We will ship to you with DHL Express Courier.
Meaning: Fertility ~ Fortune ~ Creation
Material: New Zealand Jade
Artist: Alex Sands Studio
Size: 82mm (3.2") long; 47mm (1.8") wide