Uhi Tai - Behind the Weave

Uhi Tai - Behind the Weave
Inspired by traditional tukutuku (lattice work) and the story of Tirikawa (North Rock). This full body design speaks to resilience and acknowledges our relationship with the natural environment.
Based on a local historical event involving Kinomoerua, a tribal ancestor of Tauranga and the ancestor Apanui Ringa Mutu, from the eastern coast of the Bay of Plenty region, the design story speaks to resilience in the face of adversity - and the ability to accept sound advice. In this case, the advice was centered around Tirikawa, he toka tū moana, a significant rock that stands strong in the ocean at the base of our ancestral mountain, Mauao. 
When observing the attributes of the natural environment and birdlife, Kinomoerua described a battle strategy of perseverance and resilience - he reflected upon the efforts of the kawau, (the shag) to catch its fish and the undying and enduring strength of Tirikawa.
 
"Ahakoa ūhi te tai, ka whakaea anō te toka a Tirikawa,"
despite the waves that seem to overcome Tirikawa reemerges.
 
 
The central motif of the blanket identifies Hukatai & Rehutai, two treasures that were brought from Hawaiiki by Tamatea Arikinui and vested at Tirikawa. These kura are said to be observed as the ocean foam that peels from the prow of the waka, or the sea spray upon the waves, we refer to them when we acknowledge progressive people, carving their way through life's oceans.
 
The Kawau, the shag at the peak of its dive to the depths for its fish, reflects its natural attributes having oversight and focus. The Pātiki pattern is an ode to the art of tukutuku and supports the value of relationships, to feed into our lives, opportunities to share & learn and to better sustain our community.
 
It is also a call to action to support our efforts for Climate Change, as our resilience is dependent on the resilient nature of our natural world.
 
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