Cordys

Maori and Pacific artefacts are especially in demand. Cordy’s team of in-house experts can assist you in maximising the best results for rare and special pieces as well as complete collections. We have a combined expertise of over 70 years handling many of the best collections and single pieces ever to come to the market. Additionally, New Zealand historical items such as ephemera and photography are keenly sought after. New Zealand’s relatively short history sees pieces which relate to our growing nation being sought by institutions and private collectors who form our client base.


C007-0250

An extinct adult little bush moa skeleton display
the near complete moa (Anomalopteryx didiformis) skeleton principally from the one bird found c.1969/1970 on a private farm, in Hill Top Cave, Oparure, South Waitomo by our vendor. A couple of years later a quarry license was issued and the spoil infilled into the cave. Some minor restoration. Mounted on a steel rod with number 8 and fine wire support. H.900mm. This skeleton was on display in the Waitomo Museum from c.1972 for a number of years. Note: The little bush moa was the smallest moa species, occurring in forest throughout the North and South Islands. Slender with relatively long legs, it inhabited dense forest and shrubland. Little bush moa lived in wet rainforests and were probably preyed on by both Haast's eagle (South Island only) and Eyles' harrier.

Realised: $26,000

C0012-0070

Extinct moa skeleton
Mantell's moa, species Pachyornis geranoides, the bones nearly entirely from one bird, the skull a full constructed replacement, part of the original skull sold with this lot. H.700mm. L.1250mm. Constructed using No.8 and fuse wire displayed on a wooden base with aluminium main rod support. Provenance: Found by our vendor c.1970 on Haggis's farm, Upper Waitomo Valley, opposite the entrance to Burr cave, in a 'grotty little hole'.

Realised: $22,000

C003-0162

An extinct adult male stout-legged moa skeleton
predominantly the bones from one bird, some plaster restoration and replacement. H.790mm. Provenance: Found by our vendor in 1965 on his Oparure family farm, south Waitomo district. Copy of 1968 newspaper article available illustrating and detailing this moa. Note: The stout-legged moa (Euryapteryx curtus) was the smallest moa species and one of the geographically most widespread. Moa species ranged in size from 12 to 250kg. Constructed for display by our vendor using number 8 wire and other materials.

Realised: $18,000

C0012-0071

An extinct moa skeleton
Little Bush moa or Anomalopteryx didiformis, the bones nearly entirely from the one bird, the skull with some rebuilding and full plaster replacement mandible. Constructed using No.8 and fuse wire displayed on a wooden base with aluminium main rod support. H.800mm. L.1150mm. Provenance: Found by our vendor c1970 in Mason's Dry Cave, North of Hilltop Cave, on private farm in the Waitomo district.

Realised: $14,000

C0012-0087

A 19thC large and impressive Maori pounamu mere
the traditional spatulate blade with reduced grip and rounded butt, the semi-cylindrical suspension hole with tapered outer edges, the nephrite of good dark green tone with dark and pale inclusions. L.415mm. Provenance: Ex. a private old Auckland estate. Registered Y21180. Must be a registered collector to purchase.

Realised: $13,000

C006-0182

THE IAN McMILLAN ESTATE COLLECTION. At age 10 Ian McMillan was introduced to carving by Bruce Manley and continued to develop a love
knowledge and understanding of Maori and New Zealand history and culture. Ian spent the latter years of his life based at Parnell, Auckland, New Zealand. He used only traditional hand tools and carving techniques to produce wood carvings that expressed Maori mythology. His work reflected on Maori art. Using found timber enabled Ian to portray work that revealed the piece as if it were possessed of properties of myth and legend, age and use. Ian celebrated the ability to incorporate naturally occurring damage from pepetuna, the boring grub of a pūriri moth; the hollowing effects of decay; the cavities left by colonist’s nails that had completely rusted away, or the remnant of their paint on the timber to enhance those properties. His carving and thoughtful surface detailing elevate his work above that of replica to those of fine art. Ian was born 1965 and died 2016. The items offered in this auction are being sold on behalf of Ian’s estate. Ian Robert McMillan (1965-2016) carved canoe prow - tauihu, elaborately and finely carved in traditional style using found timber with distress resembling that of an ancient prow, the forward facing figure with arms extended back; raised on two carved supports and large plinth. L.1400mm approx. H.770mm.

Realised: $10,000

B013-0169

An uncommon 19thC Maori pounamu hei tiki
chin turned to the left, remnants of red sealing wax to eyes, right hand to abdomen, left hand to thigh. H.95mm. Note: in the uncommon Bowenite variety of pounamu, displaying high translucency and of good green tone, hei tiki are uncommon in this stone and were prized by Maori. Reg. Y21011.

Realised: $10,000

C006-0254

A impressive large dark green 50kg pounamu boulder
flat ovoid form with full polished top, pale flecked inclusions. 650 x 420 x 170mm.

Realised: $9,000

C0012-0084

A quality 19thC Maori carved whalebone kotiate (hand club)
elegant lobed blade, oval grip with carved weku head with remains of red sealing wax to the eyes, square notched hole, darkish tone to one side, good patina and original polish. L.330mm. Provenance: Ex. a private old Auckland estate. Registered Y21181. Must be a registered collector to purchase..

Realised: $8,500

C009-0051

A large river worn and polished pounamu boulder/touchstone
of semi-mountainous form, the dark green tone with pale inclusions, polished top. 520 x 440 x 240. Approx. 40kgs.

Realised: $7,800