Ki'i (Idol figure)


Auckland War Memorial Museum Tāmaki Paenga Hira

Auckland War Memorial Museum Tāmaki Paenga Hira

Ki'i. Idol figure. This ki'i is carved from lā'au (wood) into a stylised human figure in a standing position. Due to its stance and depicted facial features, this ki'i is intended to be a representation of Kū, the God of War. Representations of Kū often have the figure depicted with a grimacing open mouth, with serrated decorative triangular carving along the crown of the head and trailing down the figure's back. Carved from an cylindrical block of wood, this ki'i is ovoid in cross-section. Due to the colour striations and grain of the wood this ki'i was thought to be carved from monkey pod. This ki'i is modern in construction and was intended for the tourist market. It is brown in colour with polished surface treatment.

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