One of the things I love about living in Hawaii is that I am surrounded by culture. Recently my cousin Nalei, aka Kumu Napaepae-Kunewa, took me to see a koa wa'a (koa canoe), the Mau Loa at Kahalu'u in Kona. It was an inspiring experience. There, I met Master Carver and Wayfinder (a sea navigator who finds his path through the ocean using nature as his guide without the use of modern instruments) Tava, who is repairing and finishing Mau Loa for her ocean voyage. He was also working on carving several Tikis destined for heiau's. Tava is a quiet, talented and humble man.
The Polynesian Settlement Pattern shown above is one of several pieces I made for Cousin Nalei's banner for her Ho'ike, which will be held this Friday, May 17. The theme is "No Na Mamo," "We are the Children." The map is made on handmade paper, and the canoe is made out of a sheet of koa and handmade paper.
Two more pieces for the banner, Hawaiian birds painted with acrylics on handmade paper:
The bright golden-yellow feathers of the Mamo were the most prized for the featherwork for capes for the Hawaiian royalty.
The 'Elepaiao was important in selecting the best koa tree for making a canoe.
Thanks, Cousin Nalei.
Mahalo for looking.