Fishhook of Maui
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Original painting SOLD, oil on canvas, 300 x 300mm, 2009
Print sizes and editions (limited to 75)
- Regular museum archival paper print - 300 x 300mm
Your unique limited edition fine art print
- Sofia Minson creates your exclusive signed print
- We ship for $25 in NZ and from $50 internationally
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The story of Fishshook of Maui
This work was inspired by the old stories of Maui, a demi-god who came from Hawaiiki, the legendary homeland of Maori. Myth has it that long ago Maui and his brothers went fishing far out into the ocean. For lack of other bait, Maui smeared his magic fishhook with his own blood and dropped it over the side of the waka (canoe). He felt a strong tug on the line and after much straining and chanting of karakia (incantations), there surfaced Te Ika a Maui (the fish of Maui), which is now the North Island of NZ.
A fishhook with great mana
In this work the bone carving is symbolic of Maui's sacred fishhook. Legend tells that it was fashioned from his grandfather's jawbone and possessed great mana. Here it is carved into the form of a manaia, which is an ancient mythical being with a bird's head and a human form. It is said to be the messenger between the earthly world of mortals and the domain of the spirits.
Birth, life and death
The manaia is depicted with the three fingers of birth, life and death and foreshadows the mortality of mankind and of Maui, who eventually tried but failed to conquer the goddess of death Hinenui-te-Po.
Sofia Minson Paintings | New Zealand Artwork