The islands of the South Pacific are home to some of the strangest sculptures in the world. They are like a mix of human and monster. Lots of the earliest statues, both stone and wood, were destroyed by missionaries. I like them a lot (the statues that is) and always get photos of any we find. Here are four of the ones that we saw on last year's cruise. The white guy is a new one, made from concrete. I found him at a shop door in Port Denarau, Fiji. He seems to be a mix between the Polynesian Tiki style and the Melanesian style. The red one and the grey two-headed one are in parks near the docks in Papeete, Tahiti. They are carved from local rock and are very old. The red one is the oldest of these four, and is female, The double-header is definitely male. Note the islander asleep in the background. Papeete has lots of people "busy doing nothing" in the public areas and I didn't like the feel of the town much. The fourth statue is made from wood. Actually, there are a pair of these, one mail and one female, guarding the doorway of a shop in the main street of Vaitape, Bora Bora. Most Polynesian sculptures are wooden, but they don't last as long as the stone ones do. Of course, lots of small statues are still being carved for the tourist trade, but I am not allowed to bring any wooden stuff home because of the Australian Customs laws. Maybe that's just as well because I would be competing for space with Mum's Egyptian statues.
Labels: boats, cruising, Fiji, South Pacific, Tahiti