oiwi journal


‘Ōiwi (O-ee-vee), ‘native’ or ‘of the bones;’ natives of the land

The graphic design of our logo is a visual representation of the ‘ōlelo no‘eau (Hawaiian proverb) ko kākou ēwe, ko kākou piko, ko kākou iwi, ko kākou koko, “our placenta, our umbilical cord, our bones, our blood.” It metaphorically describes the deep connections between Hawaiian people and our ‘āina (land). The ēwe is represented by the two wavy vertical lines and the area between them. There are four circular piko contained within the ēwe (Hawaiians traditionally count by fours). They represent ka lani (heavens), ka honua (earth), ka hikina a ka lā (sunrise) and ke komohana a ka lā (sunset), and ‘ākau (north), hema (south), hikina (east) and komohana (west). The iwi are the human-shaped petroglyph figures running down the center and over the ēwe and piko. The iwi represent different generations from the past (top) down to the present (bottom).  The water design to the left of the iwi is based on traditional Hawaiian kākau (tattoo) designs; the top is wai (fresh water/rain) the bottom is kai (salt water/ocean), and the middle is the mixing of the two. This represents the koko, our blood and genealogies. It also reflects the ‘ōlelo no‘eau, uē ka lani, ola ka honua, “the heavens weep, the earth lives,” and the fact that we are island people sustained by these elements. The triangular design to the right of the iwi is also a traditional kākau design called lei hala. It represents nā kūpuna, the elders and ancestors who have passed on, but who continue to guide us in all our endeavors.

 

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