Sculpture craft from Marquesas Islands
Tiki carved in wood of Miro (rose wood) - Approximate size: Height 12.5 cm - Width: 5 cm - Weight: about 100 to 130 g.
This marquisian statuette is carved from Miro wood - Dalbergia (Rose wood tree). It represents a Tiki* which is traditional from Marquesas Islands, with flat head.
Marquesan handicrafts are popular with tourists seeking a souvenir from French Polynesia, but also by collectors of Oceanian art or wooden objects.
Patterns representing tiki are omnipresents in the Polynesian culture.
*What is a Tiki?
The tiki is an emblematic figure of Polynesian culture. These figures with human forms are called tikis (tiki in marquisian language and ti'i in Tahitian language). They represent gods and deified ancestors. The word tiki designates both the anthropomorphic statue and the motif derived from the human figure. According to Polynesian mythology, Ti'i represents the first man.
How is he represented?
Sculpted Tiki are typically depicted. They look forward, knees slightly bent, arms close to the body. The hands are placed on the belly, considered as the center of emotions. All facial features are broad and stretched: nose, mouth, eyes, eyebrows, ears. The top of the head is sometimes flat or may have a crown.