Wharenui (outside) Puzzle with Wharenui (inside) Image Tray.
This information is printed on the back of the tray and also the images pinpointing parts of the Wharenui as it is alikened to that of the human anatomy.
The Treaty of Waitangi between Māori chiefs of Aotearoa/New Zealand and the British Crown was first signed on 6 February 1840. To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the treaty, a Wharenui representing all the Iwi of Aotearoa/New Zealand was built in the grounds of the Treaty House at Waitangi. This photograph shows the rich carvings and woven panels inside the building. It is carved in traditional form but is a unique expression of its purpose. It stands facing the Treaty House, the two buildings together symbolising the partnership agreed between Māori and the British Crown, on which today’s Aotearoa/New Zealand is founded. The concept was proposed by Māori Member of Parliament for the north, Tau Henare, and Sir Apirana Ngata, then Minister of Maori Affairs, as a Māori contribution to the centenary celebrations. Carving began in 1934, and the house was opened on 6 February 1940 – 100 years after the first signing of the Treaty of Waitangi. Wharenui are symbols of tribal prestige and many embody a tribal ancestor. The head at the roof apex is the ancestor’s head, the ridgepole the backbone, the bargeboards the arms with the lower ends divided to represent fingers. Inside the rafters represent ribs, and the interior is the ancestor’s chest and belly. Te Whare Rūnanga follows this form, but is not identified with any tribal ancestor. Rather, it represents the unity of Māori throughout Aotearoa New Zealand. This is emphasised by the main carving styles of Iwi across the land being brought together – creating a remarkable gallery of Māori art, as well as a spectacular example of a central part of Māori social and cultural life. The Marae is a place of Gatherings, Celebrations, Hui and Tangihanga.