Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Large manaia carving, (possibly cut from a pou pou) exhibiting unusual surface decoration known as “Taratara o Kai” or “Taratara a Kai” which means “prickly” or “barbed”, and is presumably applied to this pattern from the variant form consisting of a row of pointed triangles. Taratara a kai consists of parallel strips of raised zigzag notching, separated by a ridge or, sometimes, by a plain space. The pattern is practically confined to the Arawa and Matatua tribes of Rotorua and the Bay of Plenty and the Ngati Maru of the Thames area. In these areas the pattern is used on pataka (storehouses) and only rarely on other buildings. It is also present on a palisade post from a pa near Wairoa, Hawke's Bay.

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