Toi Paematua Raranga

Diploma in Maori Visual Arts

Mandy's Work Journal, 2010


What are whakatuaki? They are proverbs and sayings, adages like "Be careful what you wish for" etc.
How does this apply to raranga? Simply put, there are a lot of whakatauki that refer to weaving, after all we are talking about a craft that created things essential to survival, ropes, and containers to carry things, and clothing. It stands to figure that lore and adages would have developed around the strength of raranga.

We spent a few weeks at course sharing whakatauki each day. This is the collection we gathered, plus a few others I found that touched me in some way.

Whaia te iti kahuranga ki te tuahu koe me he maunga teitei
Aim for the highest cloud, so that if you mis it, you will still land on a lofty mountain.

Kaore te kumara e whaaki ana tana reka
the Kumara doesn't say how sweet it is

He waka eke noa
A canoe we are all in with no exception. We are all on this ride together.

Hutia te rito o te pu harakeke. Kei whea te komako e ko?
A plea for conservation: If you destroy the flax, from where will the bellbird sing?

Hupane, kaupane, whiti te ra.
A new dawn, a new day.

He toka tu moana, ara he toa rongonui
Your strength is like a rock, standing in the raging waters

Te ara o tukutuku pingawerewere
the pathway of the spider. Said when something is intricate and very beautiful.

Waiho ma te tangata e mihi.
Let someone else sing your praises, not yourself. Be humble.