This carving is a protest piece. While this content may be a bit controversial it is not my intention to offend anyone...
I was going to price this carving at $43,269.23, however, I have settled on $18,173.08 NZD. I will accept any offers over $10,000. This simple carving represents 4.5 hours work. Now I do not seriously expect anyone to be bold enough to pay this much for such a carving (as nice as that would be). If you continue reading I will explain how I reached such a costing…
This carving is named Whakatika mai i te whare herehere – Arise from prison.
I have charged the same per hour as it costs to make and maintain one intercontinental ballistic nuclear weapon, per year, or the average salary of a pharmaceutical CEO. This equates to approximately $20 million per year (low end). Or $9615.38 per hour.
The world values and prioritises these things. Supply and demand. Even though many people have no access to the medications they need and have no desire to go to war. Yet somehow humans have created systems and structures that determine that vast sums of money are worthy of such endeavours.
Trillions of dollars are spent per year on weapons. We humans charge highly over-inflated prices, and limit access to life-saving drugs and treatments for many suffering individuals around the world.
This carving stands as a symbol of protest towards the insanity we humans have created due to our greed and self-centred lack of genuine love for others.
The figure of $18,173.08 for this carving is based on the average earnings of an oil company CEO (8.5 Million per year).
The Koru running up and down the edge of the carving represents a ‘prison like existence’. They are like the ups and downs of life. Those who have enough ups are mostly satisfied within the prison we occupy and therefore are content with the status quo. Generally blind to the direction that the status quo is taking the world and its people…It’s unsustainable, however as long as it’s good now, we’ll deal with the later results then…
The prison symbolised in the carving is the fact that we do not own our time or lives at all! We are enslaved to a system. Not truly free.
We need to pay large sums of money to eat basic food, to drink clean water, to sleep and to simply exist. We are held fast by social constructs such as an economic model doomed to ultimately fail, given that it is based on a system that demands year by year growth, within the confines of finite resources.
We are all forced to participate in a contrived economic system that enslaves us to the endless cycle of consumerism.
Humans have invented the concept that we call money. This fabricated system that is unnecessarily complicated and arbitrary. Such a system is easily manipulated and creates a society of division. In theory, what is stopping a computer from adding one number followed by six zeros to every bank account in the world? Think about it.
It is saddening to see that most people in the world who believe that they are free, are in fact bound by the vast and very secure prison that our modern society has created.
Modern day slavery is alive and well. Except it is cunning, it bequeaths us the illusion we are free, yet we are far from it. The majority of our society are sleep walking.
The icon in the centre of the carving represents a DNA. Within this structure is held an inlay of Pāua. When you look mathematically at the number of lifeforms on planet earth, the chances of being born human is extremely rare! Yet, here you and I are. This is symbolic of hope.
Within this is the symbolism of a solution. Our ability to take responsibility, to change and adapt. It represents an alternative escape route from this prison. Rather than trying to ‘break out’, it depicts going deep within ourselves to awaken our most profound potentials. To fully awaken.