The moʻai are monolithic statues, their minimalist style reflective of forms found throughout Polynesia. Moʻai are carved from volcanic ash. The human figures would be outlined in the rock wall first, then chipped away until only the image was left. The over-large heads (a three-to-five ratio between the head and the trunk, a sculptural trait that demonstrates the Polynesian belief in the sanctity of the chiefly head) have heavy brows and elongated noses with a distinctive fish-hook-shaped curl of the nostrils. The lips protrude in a thin pout. Like the nose, the ears are elongated and oblong in form. The jaw lines stand out against the truncated neck. The torsos are heavy, and, sometimes, the clavicles are subtly outlined in stone. The arms are carved in bas relief and rest against the body in various positions, hands and long slender fingers resting along the crests of the hips, meeting at the hami (loincloth), with the thumbs sometimes pointing towards the navel. Generally, the anatomical features of the backs are not detailed, but sometimes bear a ring and girdle motif on the buttocks and lower back. Except for one kneeling moʻai, the statues do not have clearly visible legs.
Though moʻai are whole-body statues, they are often referred to as “Easter Island heads” in some popular literature. This is partly because of the disproportionate size of most moʻai heads, and partly because many of the iconic images for the island showing upright moʻai are the statues on the slopes of Rano Raraku, many of which are buried to their shoulders. Some of the “heads” at Rano Raraku have been excavated and their bodies seen, and observed to have markings that had been protected from erosion by their burial.
Candles are used in religious rituals & for spiritual means as both functional & symbolic lights. It was believed that burning candles would aid in protection & invite helpful spirits into the home
1 vintage candle