Spirit Wrestler Gallery (Vancouver, Canada)
12.

Tika atu Tika mai • March Moon: Keeper of Justice and Equality

by


The pare (lintel) is the carving above the door on the whare (meeting house). It is once passing through this door that issues to do with Maori were brought forward to be discussed. It is a place where people have a voice, and as a whanau (family), hapu (clan), iwi (tribe) can come together to find a solution. In today’s society Maori unfortunately have the highest representation in the New Zealand justice system. Many Maori elders believe the young offenders should be brought back to the marae (traditional gathering place). This would make the rangitahi (youth) aware of who they are and how they connect to the land—and hopefully this would be enough for them not to become another one of those statistics.

Lewis Tamihana Gardiner

Lewis Tamihana Gardiner

Māori

Te Arawa, Ngāti Awa, Whanau a Apanui, Ngāi Tahu

(1972- )

Lewis Gardiner is regarded as one of the most innovative and respected Māori jade artists of his generation. In 1994, he graduated in Māori Craft and Design at the Waiariki Institute of Technology in Rotorua. During his final year he was introduced to the valuable medium of pounamu (jade) and was immediately attracted to its artistic possibilities. Māori had always valued pounamu for both its hardness and for its translucent beauty. Lewis was no different — as he says, “Our tupuna (ancestors) have given us, the Māori people, the resource and knowledge base to provide a reference for us and our children for years to come.”