The patterns used reflect the Polynesian origin of Maori and their links back to ancients known as the Lapita peoples. The kupenga (net pattern) at the top of the vessel refers to the woven net of genealogy that links all Polynesian peoples and to the currents, cross currents and tides of the Pacific that were known and used by those ancient master mariners of the Pacific.
Te Popoto o Ngā Puhi Ki Kaipara
Largely self-taught, Colleen developed her interest in pottery while completing an art major at Auckland Teachers College. She continued to experiment during the 1970s, encouraged by Alec Musha, one of the first Māori potters. She believes strongly in tradition, decorating with traditional Māori weaving patterns or by adding muka (flax fibre), feathers or shell to her works. For her, “working with clay means working with the body of Mother Earth, she who influences and sustains us physically and spiritually.”
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