Thursday, 17 January 2008 2:36 PM

Expressing Tradition Through Carvings

The art of expressing tradition in the carving industry is an income earner for an enthusiastic carver.

Catching up with Yaxley Pongi of Rennell-Bellona Province, he said that carving is a passion to "maintain tradition through art".

Mr. Pongi, who favours objective arts best, said switching to carving is "mainly to investigate in the unique arts of both Polynesia and Melanesia".

The Polynesian carver has represented Solomon Islands in festivals held overseas, and believes promoting carving brings to life tradition "long forgotten".

Mr. Pongi added that he intends to promote the different types of arts that describe the diverse culture of the Solomons.

He stressed on the importance of promoting the art to the younger generation.

"If we do not pass on the skills and knowledge, then the art will pass away in time with the aging carvers," Mr. Pongi said.

Asked on his goals in his field, Mr. Pongi expressed his desire to set up an artifact workshop that would promote Melanesian and Polynesian arts.

"I have not been successful in my applications, but that will not stop me," a determined Mr. Pongi said.

While it is hard work, Mr. Pongi said the sweat is worth it because "in the end, the result is good and I earn good income even from one piece of carving".