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Ipipirilodge | Guardian of the Lodge - Ipipirilodge

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Guardian of the Lodge

Guardian of Ipipiri Lodge

Guardian of the LodgeThe Whale’s Tail/Fish hook sculpture greets all family, friends and guests to Ipipiri Lodge. This magnificant emblem stands at two metres high and was made for us in Kaitaia (one hour north of Kerikeri) by a local artist.

This magnificent emblem has been chosen as the guardian of our home as it holds many meanings through Elaine’s family tree (whakapapa), a career on the water in the navy for Elaine and Graham, the Maori connections through family and friends, and for the closeness of the water in the Bay of Islands. It is also the beginning a new life and new challenge.

The ocean has always been a dominant force for the Maori people who travelled huge distances in their long canoes (waka) and lived on the bounty of the tropical waters. They had great respect for the creatures within especially dolphins and whales, therefore the sculpture has several meanings within it.

Whales are a symbol of protection. This symbol of protection encompasses the friendship and companionship words cannot express of the complex relationship between these mammals and Maori.

Hei Matau (fish hooks) symbolise provision and prosperity, strenght, prosperity, abundance, fertility and a great respect for the sea. It is also said to provide safe journey over water. The fish hook is also the emblem of the South Island. Hei-Matua are also symbols of power and authority which are held in great reverence by the Maori people.

They were used as a practical tool for fishing and were often decorated as a sign of respect for the creatures of the sea. If worn as a neck adornment then the wearer was provided with companionship, support in times of need, love and food if the wearer is a hunter or fisherman.

In the eye of the fish hook is the New Zealand Paua which is unique to New Zealand – it is the most colourful shell in the world and is a species of Abalone (Haliotis Iris). Paua are primarily caught for their meat, which is a traditional delicacy of the Maori. There is a strict quota system in place to sustain the management of paua fishery. Every shell is different in colour and the colours change when viewed from different angles, and it is this iridescence that make paua shell magical!