Hepi never expected to earn a living in the arts, but became a carver when he lost his legs in a truck accident. Having no intention of living off the state, he responded to an advertisement in the local paper in Rotorua for potential jade carvers. Hepi has now been carving for more than 30 years and is one of the leading jade carvers in New Zealand. His carving is in a contemporary style based on the gentle, sweeping curves of ancient Māori art. Over the years, his jade pieces have been presented publicly to many people, from prime ministers to sports celebrities, and as awards at institutions and schools. His work has been documented in numerous publications and included in museums and private collections all over the world. He participated in “Kiwa—Pacific Connections” (2003) in Vancouver, Canada.
Original excerpt from Manawa—Pacific Heartbeat, 2005.
Spirit Wrestler Gallery
47 Water Street
Canada V6B 1A1
Toll Free: 1-888-669-8813
3 blocks from Waterfront Station
Between Abbott St. and Carrall St.
Monday to Saturday, open 10-6
Sunday and Holidays, open 12-5
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