Hine Pū te Hue is the spiritual entity for the hue - a marrow-like vegetable brought to Aotearoa and cultivated by Māori. She is a daughter of Tāne Māhuta (god of the forests and birds). Dried and hollowed gourds were used as containers for water and preserved food. Smaller ones were used as containers for perfume. Puoro were also made from hue, including the hue puruhau (pictured), the kōauau ponga ihu, poi āwhiowhio or ‘whistling gourd’, and hue puruwai.
Hine Pū te Hue is associated with calming storms. The sounds created from the hue are soothing and peaceful, like the spirit of Hine Pū te Hue. The hue pictured was gifted to Te Papa by Hirini Melbourne in 1997, as part of the Haumanu collection of puoro Māori.