Rongomaiwahine, Ngati Kahungunu
Dallas was first introduced to pounamu (greenstone) when walking on the beaches of the West Coast, South Island of New Zealand in 1996. After finding his first beach pebble he was captivated by this taonga (treasure) and decided to pursue his interest in jade.
Dallas completed his certificate in Jade Carving at Tai Poutini Polytechnic in Greymouth in 1997. The following year he attended Te Wananga O Aotearoa in order to expand his knowledge of tikanga and Te Reo Maori. This aided in providing Dallas with good background knowledge of the myths, legends and symbolism of Maori culture.
In 2005 Dallas completed his diploma in Jade and Hard Stone Carving. The major component of his Diploma year was devoted to taonga puoro (traditional Maori musical instruments). This allowed him to explore his other passion for music. Dallas was awarded with a Pounamu (greenstone) for Most Creative Use of Stone upon the completion of his Diploma.
Dallas carves a range of different stones, but his preference is New Zealand pounamu. He sees himself as but one step in the journey of each stone from Papatuanuku (mother earth) to the recipient. For Dallas, the most important factor is to honour the stone and allow it to tell its own tale.
“I strive to create taonga that will be passed down through the generations.”