About this object

A wooden humanoid figure, in the style of a gable ornament for a meeting house. The figure is carved from a flat rectangle. It has its three-fingered hands placed on its stomach with fingers touching and a plain pointed tongue protruding to the right side from a beaked mouth. The round eyes are shell-inlaid discs. The surface decoration is based on rauponga (several parallel ridges and grooves with a notched ridge in between), which form a 'v' shape on the chest and ovals at the shoulders, knees, feet and corners of the mouth. There are traces of red pigment in the haehae (grooves).

Object specifics

  • Type
    Tourist Item
  • Culture
  • Artist/Maker
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place made
    Oceania: Polynesia: New Zealand
  • Date made
    1932 before
  • Materials
    Wood; Abalone (Haliotis sp); Pigment Red; Technique: Carved, inlaid
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of the Trustees of the Wellcome Collection
  • Collector
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place collected
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Date collected
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Measurements
    10.0 x 4.0 x 26.5 cm
  • Note
    Probably made for sale to tourists.

    Attributions: Carved by Tene Waitere, Rotorua, for sale to tourists, about 1900 (David Simmons, October 1981); not by Tene Waitere, but in his style (Roger Neich, March 1994).

    Acquired by Wellcome Historical Medical Museum from Mr Stow, 10 May 1932.
  • Related people
    Harry Stow (Previous owner); Wellcome Historical Medical Museum (Previous owner)


Previous owners

  • Wellcome Historical Medical Museum

    Owned from: 1932-05-10
    How acquired: Gift
    Owned until: 1951
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
  • Harry Stow

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1932-05-10
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
Object view = Humanities
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