This Kera Wera Hei Tiki - Whale Bone & Ebony sculpture features a merging of two profound symbols of Maori culture.
Hand-carved and crafted by Alex Sands, this sculpture measures approximately 24 x 4 cms. It sits on a Rewarewa (native timber) base with brass fittings.
The Hei Tiki Mask was carved from the whale jawbone and the hands and feet were created using whale tooth.
The whale figure is an antique carving acquired from the Solomon Islands. It is constructed from Ebony wood and the eyes are inlaid with mother of pearl.
Hei Tiki were particularly treasured heirlooms. They often had their own names, and were passed down within families from generation to generation, gaining in ancestral mana.
Whales possess a tapu (sacred) significance to Maori as both supernatural beings and as harbingers of personal change and spiritual growth.