Hikule'o

Updated: Mar 24

The main carving I'm really interested in is Hikule'o, her origins are from Tonga. Like anything from pre-colonial Moana, there's a lot of differing info about her.


Cheifess of Puluto, hub of music poetry art and performance.


Sources:


General rundown of her story:


Hikule’o is the precolonial Tongan goddess of Pulotu, the underworld. Hikule’o is a part of the main three gods on Tongan mythology along with her brothers Tangaloa (God of the Sky) and Maui (God of the Land). Hikule’o’s gender is widely contested, most accounts are hint towards Hikule’o being female and some are male. Hikule’o was the golden child, Tangaloa and Maui feeling very shorted, they tied Hikule’o up and put her in Pulotu. There she waits to break free to burn and wreak havoc on the world. When the missionaries came to Tonga, the King at the time tied a noose around a figure of Hikule’o to denounce the old gods and embrace Christianity.


This video by Coconet was super influential for me beginning this research:



From these stories I did a painting:

Hikule'o, 120x90cms, Oil on Canvas, 2020. `


Other artists who have depicted her:


Nathan Suniula: Hikule'o