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Tiki Central Forums » » Collecting Tiki » » A Collection of Cannibals
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A Collection of Cannibals
Tiki-Kate
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 21, 2003
Posts: 1700
From: Yucaipa, CA
Posted: 2009-09-14 6:48 pm   Permalink

I honestly can't recall when my obsession with the Cannibal Trio started, but it's difficult to immerse oneself in the world of Polynesian Pop without running across this group fairly frequently. These little guys really got around. They started in Bora Bora and got picked up by Don the Beachcomber, Steve Crane and several others.

I've always referred to them as Hunter, Catcher and Ingestor. I think I might have picked up those appellations from Bosko.

This weekend I purchased this set. It's one of those things that doesn't even make it onto your Holy Grail list because you can't imagine ever coming across something like this.

Sven asked for more pictures, so here you go.







Then, of course, I started thinking about my other cannibal collectibles.

The matchbooks. (The Harbor Hut in Morro Bay is missing the Hunter.)



The mystery swizzle.


The Doug Horne Mai Kai print.


The Oceanic Arts Bora Bora pole and Catcher statue.


Squid's pendant. Dave - Could you take care of those other two when you get a chance please?


The 2004 Hukilau Mug.


The 2007 Hukilau Mug.


The Thatch Mug.


I picked up this set of samples on ebay. I'm not sure if they were ever mass produced.


Here are a few images that I collected from the Mai Kai last year at Hukilau.

The Bora Bora lamp.


The Cannibal Trio from the old Mai Kai sign.



A few items from other collectors.

Kingstiedye has these salt & pepper shakers.


These Bosko mugs belong to TravelingJones.


This is Sven's dissection of the cannibals from a thread that was in Marketplace.

Quote:

On 2009-08-24 23:06, bigbrotiki wrote:
I could write a whole chapter on the cannibals, but I am still on a shoot and don't have the time. There are four basic styles in carving:

1.) The original Don The Beachcomber style:


2.) The Steve Crane Luau and Kon Tiki style:


3.) The Tahitian tourist Tiki style (seen at O.A.):


4.) The "Asian eyes mistake" Bora Bora post style:


The last ones grew out of the sloppy rendering done of Don's Tikis done on the original Don the Beachcomber menu, which failed to recognize the Marquesan "wrap around eyes":


... a mistake which was perpetuated by the Luau:


The Mai Kai artist did more justice to the Don style cannibals:


But the graphic history of the cannibals is another story. Back to the CARVINGS:
The original Don cannibals were his only pet Tikis, he had them in his back bar in Hollywood..


in his home in Encino:


...and used them as POSTS in his bars in Chicago:


...and Waikiki:


Darn....sorry, gotta go to work, -to be continued




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little lost tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 12, 2006
Posts: 7589
From: Orange,CA-right near the Circle!
Posted: 2009-09-14 6:58 pm   Permalink

Kate is Rad.....
no two ways about it!

YAY Cannibals!


 
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LoungeShark
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 10, 2009
Posts: 161
From: Columbus, Ohio
Posted: 2009-09-14 7:01 pm   Permalink

Wow! Now I feel like an expert on them, too. Thanks for the education and pics.

 
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Bora Boris
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2005
Posts: 2588
From: Boogie Wonderland
Posted: 2009-09-14 7:07 pm   Permalink

Here's a picture of the little ones at the Mai-Kai that I took during Hukilau 2008 ~


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Doctor Z
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 01, 2002
Posts: 1613
From: The Hale Moana Lounge, Torrance, CA
Posted: 2009-09-14 8:18 pm   Permalink

I always thought they were called "The Chase", "The Capture", amd "Full Tummy".

Don't know where I got that from...
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bigtikidude
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 8926
From: Anaheim,Ca.
Posted: 2009-09-14 8:41 pm   Permalink

this is just a sick assumption,
but is it possible that its not a hunt,
but a birth, an eating, and a full tummy,?
as in eating ones young?

I know, I'm demented.
but you never know.

Jeff(btd)



 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11192
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2009-09-14 10:11 pm   Permalink

Not as sick as you might think: Not having any other forms of birth control at their disposal, but being aware that the resources on an island were limited, infanticide was an accepted form of birth control on Tahiti. So much for paradise.

Though the squatting birth position was common in the islands, and the middle figure could be interpreted as pulling the baby out between the legs, the fact that the "catcher" is clearly sitting on his victim seems to make the Cannibal concept more likely.

BUT: Cannibalism was NOT a Tahitian custom (unlike in the Marquesas), only human sacrifice, meaning ritual killing, but not ingesting. I believe that the influx of Marquesan carvers in Tahiti led to these puppies being called Bora Bora or Tahitian Cannibal carvings, but that their tradition and style actually hails from the Marquesas. Since no ancient examples exist, it is unclear if the concept is based on ancient tradition, or was an early whimsical idea to appeal to the tourists.


Quote:

On 2009-09-14 18:48, Tiki-Kate wrote:
I honestly can't recall when my obsession with the Cannibal Trio started...




...maybe with the BOT?

An early souvenir concept indeed, as the date 1923 now asserts. Fantastic, Kate, I never had any proof of first appearance. Now compare these to the fake repros that were up on T.C. a few weeks ago, and everyone will see the difference.

Now the question remains: Why, starting with Don, did everyone in Polynesian pop get the sequence wrong? Wasn't it obvious?


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11192
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2009-09-14 10:48 pm   Permalink

Here are some additional images of the original cannibals to illustrate their design -which has not been fully understood by many Tiki artists, since they were not privy to the originals.

the catcher:



the eater:





 
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HOUSE OF KU
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 15, 2005
Posts: 539
From: TIKILAND, USA
Posted: 2009-09-15 04:13 am   Permalink

One for you Big Bro....





Mai Kai shirt

Another eater...@ Spence Weaver's granddaughters house



Aloha, Freddie

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GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2009-09-15 06:24 am   Permalink

That's such a great find. And they're in remarkably good condition. Congratulations Kate!

 
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atomictonytiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 14, 2002
Posts: 1278
From: Bangkok
Posted: 2009-09-15 06:30 am   Permalink

I was wondering if those carvings inspired the Indiana Jones idol...





 
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AlohaStation
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 27, 2004
Posts: 2156
From: So FL
Posted: 2009-09-15 06:34 am   Permalink

My personal favorites




 
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little lost tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 12, 2006
Posts: 7589
From: Orange,CA-right near the Circle!
Posted: 2009-09-15 08:05 am   Permalink

WOW!
WHAT A LEARNIN HERE!
i always thought the Cannibals were arranged as thus...



Logically,it includes the WHOLE digestive process...
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naugatiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 02, 2004
Posts: 836
From: Port Angeles, Wa
Posted: 2009-09-15 08:25 am   Permalink

I had a Sophie’s Choice moment with this one when years ago the owner told me I could buy one of the set while the other two were promised to someone else. It was my first large tiki and I’d love complete the set, alias.







 
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cloudmonkey
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Feb 28, 2008
Posts: 19
Posted: 2009-09-15 11:37 am   Permalink

This is some fascinating stuff.

Is the Harvey's signature tiki logo one of these cannibals?



The little guy is right where the big guy's mouth would be. Is this a very stylized version of the Eater?


 
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