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The Maori in the Land of the Long White Cloud

Full photo story article with photos and text
6 photos, 445 words

Globe-trekking photographer Werner Forman went to New Zealand. Amid adventures he photographed many ancient Maori artefacts for the book “Maori – Heirs of Tane.” They were polynesians who voyage far across the Pacific in canoes and settled in Aotearoa – the Land of the Long White Cloud and created their own culture before Europeans arrived. Werner Forman Archive has a treasury of photographs of ancient Maori weapons, tools, jewellery and historical structures.

Werner Forman Archive has an extensive library of photographs of archaeological sites, architecture, evocative landscapes, and art from many great museums and private collections of the world.

Click any photo to start gallery:

  • Milford Sound on the west coast of South Island. Mountains overlooking the Sound. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Place of Origin: South Island. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive. Location: 13.
    Milford Sound on the west coast of South Island. Mountains overlooking the Sound. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Place of Origin: South Island. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive. Location: 13.
  • A jade hei-tiki or breast pendant. Prized as personal ornaments, some hei-tiki also became sacred clan heirlooms passed down for many generations, accumulating the mana, prestige, of their owners. This example was given to a missionary, perhaps because he was regarded as possessing mana. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Date/Period: 18th C. Place of Origin: New Zealand. Material Size: Green jade. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ British Museum, London . Location: 05.
    A jade hei-tiki or breast pendant. Prized as personal ornaments, some hei-tiki also became sacred clan heirlooms passed down for many generations, accumulating the mana, prestige, of their owners. This example was given to a missionary, perhaps because he was regarded as possessing mana. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Date/Period: 18th C. Place of Origin: New Zealand. Material Size: Green jade. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ British Museum, London . Location: 05.
  • A carved wood Maori head with inlaid shell eyes. It represents a specific ancestor, who can be recognised by his distinctive pattern of moko, facial tattoos. These tattoos were a sign of great courage and regarded as revealing a man’s true identity. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Material Size: Wood, shell. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ Auckland Institute and Museum, Auckland. Location: 09.
    A carved wood Maori head with inlaid shell eyes. It represents a specific ancestor, who can be recognised by his distinctive pattern of moko, facial tattoos. These tattoos were a sign of great courage and regarded as revealing a man’s true identity. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Material Size: Wood, shell. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ Auckland Institute and Museum, Auckland. Location: 09.
  • Te Hau-Ki-Turanga meeting house, built by the Ngati Kaipoho tribe in 1842. Entrance doorway flanked by the main supporting post and, at the far side, a self-portrait of the chief carver Raharuhi Rukupo. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Date/Period: 1842. Place of Origin: Manutuke. Material Size: Wood, reed. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ National Museum of New Zealand, Wellington. Location: 01.
    Te Hau-Ki-Turanga meeting house, built by the Ngati Kaipoho tribe in 1842. Entrance doorway flanked by the main supporting post and, at the far side, a self-portrait of the chief carver Raharuhi Rukupo. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Date/Period: 1842. Place of Origin: Manutuke. Material Size: Wood, reed. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ National Museum of New Zealand, Wellington. Location: 01.
  •  a model war canoe made in the gisbourne area until the end of the eighteenth century the war canoe was the most prized and decorated clan possession later this role was taken over by the storehouse country of origin : new zealand culture : maori date / period : mid 19th c place of origin : gisbourne material size : wood
    a model war canoe made in the gisbourne area until the end of the eighteenth century the war canoe was the most prized and decorated clan possession later this role was taken over by the storehouse country of origin : new zealand culture : maori date / period : mid 19th c place of origin : gisbourne material size : wood
  • A tokipoutangata, ceremonial chief’s adze, used to invoke the gods while making the first chips of a canoe or house carving. The adze handle was a prominent symbol of each senior chief, being buried with him, while the blade would be passed on and fitted with a new handle by his successor. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Date/Period: 19th C. Material Size: Wood, greenstone. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ National Museum of New Zealand Wellington. Location: 03.
    A tokipoutangata, ceremonial chief’s adze, used to invoke the gods while making the first chips of a canoe or house carving. The adze handle was a prominent symbol of each senior chief, being buried with him, while the blade would be passed on and fitted with a new handle by his successor. Country of Origin: New Zealand. Culture: Maori. Date/Period: 19th C. Material Size: Wood, greenstone. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ National Museum of New Zealand Wellington. Location: 03.

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