Young Kiwi pounamu carver making his mark in the industry

Source: 1News

One of the next generation of Māori pounamu carvers may have just been discovered at the age of 14.

The Christchurch student has only been carving for a year at Haeata Community Campus but already his work is being sold commercially.

Josh Hose is a teenager keen to learn all he can about the art of pounamu carving.

“I like being able to carve something I never thought I would be able to,” he says.

His determination has made him stand out and his tutor, Jon Jeet, calls him number one.

“I can't say it too loud because there are other students there, right. I do say he's number one but that causes a little tiny bit of division,” he says with a laugh.

Josh spends every moment he can doing carving.

“My first one that I ever made I gave to my dad because we were taught the first one you make you have to give to someone,” he says.

He's come a long way since his first piece.

“Being like a proud dad you want to show your kids off to everyone, so with Josh I really want to showcase what he can do,” Mr Jeet says.

Christchurch’s Greenstone Shop sells work from carvers who are a lot older than Josh - who is decades younger - but his work is still in demand.

“I think he's really got something special and I think if he keeps with it he could go really far," says Greenstone Shop's Louise King. "I think it's pretty important and I hope he takes it further."

The campus has also just been granted $135,000 from Te Pūtahitanga to help develop more people interested in learning the art of carving.