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Gift from father to son

Shayal Devi
Saturday, October 28, 2017

OVER the course of the past 22 years, Aminio Siga has come a long way from carving woodcraft on his home island of Fulaga, Lau, to working for five-star resorts along the Coral Coast.

And visitors to popular tourist properties such as Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort will notice Siga's handiwork displayed across the resort, most prominently in the form of magimagi (coconut husk fibre) designs.

"I was working in the engineering department but I am now doing artwork around the resort," he says.

"I've been working here for about three years, doing carving after I retired."

Siga travelled to Nadroga 22 years ago with his family. He says he chose Nadroga because he has maternal links there.

"After retiring, I started selling some woodcarving here. Carving is a part of me. I started carving when I was a very young boy and it was a tradition passed on to me."

He describes his ability to carve as a tribal gift, something he says was passed down to him by his father and his father before him.

"Similarly, I passed the skill down to my son.

"Fulaga Island is well known for woodcarving and weaving all sorts of art and craft. We should all know how to carve and do our different kinds of art."

On days when he isn't engaging in magimagi art, he can be found carving craft for interested buyers at the resort.

He says the trade is an important one that helps him put food on the table for his family.

Siga has three children, four grandsons and a granddaughter.

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