Traditionally wakahuia were hand-carved wooden repositories for small valuables.
This wakahuia is crafted from New Zealand kauri and paua, with a haehae paakati design, and decorated with an ancient form of Waituhi (painted scrollwork).
Artist: Warren McGrath
Dimensions: 50cm long x 10cm wide x 17cm high (including base)
About the Artist:
Warren McGrath is of Ngati Ruru and Raukawa ki Wharepuuhunga descent, and lives in Ngaruawahia with his wife Victoria and six children.
After completing his carpentry apprenticeship he trained in Whakairo Rakau under the mantel of Te Ranga Waananga Whakairo based in Hamilton, one of the King movements strongest traditional components in the art of Whakairo Rakau. It was here that Warren was taught the spiritual, holistic and physical embodiments of the craft.
In 1990 Warren was awarded the 1990 Combative medal – In recognition of services to New Zealand for his involvement and dedication to the craft of Whakairo Rakau. Warren completed a Bachelors programme with Te Waananga O Aotearoa, we he graduated top of his class. He has exhibited throughout New Zealand and has produced works for both national and international clients.
Warren draws his inspiration from the ancient carving styles and oral histories of Tainui waka and associated iwi. He has recently incorporated contemporary mediums such as copper, stainless steel and brass into his work.