Gordon Tang small Kou lidded umeke 4 x 3.5 x 3.5
Gordon’s traditional Hawaiian shapes are widely appreciated by collectors of Hawaiiana both for functional and decorative purposes. A number of people collect his bowls for poi supper, luckies!
Though koa is a more familiar wood in present times, in ancient times, kou was preferred, especially for poi. Kou is used often now in landscaping in public spaces. As a result, we’re getting more used to seeing the orange flowers of the Kou tree that was almost wiped out in the last century.
From the Bishop Museum Ethnobotany Database:
Hawaiian Name(s): kou
Scientific Name: Cordia subcordata
Vernacular Name: none
Status: Polynesian introduction
Description: Small trees 5-7 m tall.
Habitat Found on all main islands, sparringly naturalized at low elevation, in dry coastal areas (Wagner et al. 1990:392–4).
Non Medicinal Uses: Soft but durable wood made into bowls (‘umeke) & utensils, does not give off flavor (Krauss 1993:22), special ‘umeke mana ‘ai for first–born children made sometimes of kou that had been planted over afterbirths of grandparents (Krauss 1993:23); leaves for dye (Krauss 1993:65). Planted as shade trees near homes and the flowers used for lei (Handy et al. 1972:232), seeds eaten (Wagner et al. 1990:394).
Location on Bishop Museum Kalihi Campus: near Halekini
The actual size is 4 x 3.5x 3.5″. The specifications tab includes the size and weight when packed for shipping.
Gordon Tang small Kou lidded umeke