Ina and the shark (Ceremonial quilt/tivaevae), circa 1990, Group of Mamas: Maria Teokotai, Iva Cecil, Agnes Winchester, Noo Ngatuakana, Ake Mateariki, Mata And; cotton, Cook Islands. Te Papa.
Group of Mamas, Ina and the shark (Ceremonial quilt/tivaevae), circa1990
This is an unusual form of tivaevae manu (embroidered quilts) in which a number of individual cotton and other textile pieces are appliquéd, sometimes fully or partly overlapping one another, on a blue background with coloured fish, crabs and sharks and of course, Ina, the focus of the legend feature.
In the story of Ina and the Shark, Ina, from the island of Mangaia, rides on the back of a shark carrying coconuts. When she becomes thirsty, she decides to crack a coconut open on the shark's head. This enraged the shark, so he ate her, but that is where the dent on the head of a shark's head is said to have come from, still visible today. The Cook Island three dollar note also features an illustration of the legend of Ina and the Shark.