Wednesday, February 4, 2009


The traditional Maori Hei-tiki, or neck pendant, usually carved in pounamu (greenstone or jade), has made a big comeback as a contemporary cross-cultural accessory and tourist souvenir. For many Maori the Hei-tiki relates to a sense of Maori cultural identity; for other New Zealanders and overseas visitors, the Hei-tiki portrays a more general sense of New Zealand identity. There are plentiful references to the Hei-tiki form in Maori art and in contemporary jewellery. I spotted these great little felt Hei-tiki brooches made by Deborah Walsh, at The Little River Gallery on Banks Peninsular, 40 minutes from Christchurch.

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