Posts written by Nina Tonga

Countering stereotypes through co-collecting with Tongan youth

  • Shell, maker unknown. Gift of Kupa Kupa, 2015. CC BY-NC-ND licence. Te Papa (FE012955)
  • Small Things Matter
  • Project 83
  • Toakase Fakaosilea

As part of our co-collecting initiative with the Tongan community, students have been considering what truly represents them and counters stereotypical representations. Curator Pacific Art, Nina Tonga highlights some of the students and their selected objects. Back in 2014, our Pacific Cultures team took Year 13 Tongan language students from Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate in Otara,… Read more »

Kava, fashion, and teenage life: Co-collecting with our Tongan communities

  • Pikipikihama kae vaevae manava team
  • Edmond Fehoko, Cultural Consultant, Pukepuke Fonua II
  • Czarina Wilson and Kenneth Tuai, Cultural Advisors-Fashion Curators. Tufunga Teuteu, Faiva Teuteu: The Tongan Material Arts of Fashion Making and Performance Arts of Fashion Wearing.
  • History and textiles collection tour with Stephanie Gibson, Curator Contemporary Life and Culture.

Pacific Art curator Nina Tonga introduces Pikipiki hama kae vaevae manava, a new initiative that sees Te Papa team up with Tongan communities in Auckland to explore the rich cultures through fashion, kava, and youth experiences. Since 2016, the Pacific Cultures team has been exploring new ways to engage Pacific communities to co-curate collections that better represent… Read more »

One of the Good Guys: Phantom Shields in Papua New Guinea

Shield (painted with the Phantom character), maker unknown. Purchased 2015. Te Papa (FE013020)

Deep in the jungle of Bangalla lives a masked comic-strip marvel known as the Phantom, a guardian of the innocent who fights against the destruction of injustice. His powerful feats, which stretch over four hundred years, earned him the alias of the ‘Ghost Who Walks’ and the ‘Man who Never Dies’. Despite his perceived immortality,… Read more »

Co-collecting in Guåhan: Inside the Weavers Studio

Mark Benavente and James Bamba

On our recent co-collecting project in Guåhan with Humanities Guåhan we spent time in the workspaces of indigenous Chamorro blacksmiths, carvers and weavers. The next blog in our ‘inside the artist studio’ series delves into the practices of two weaving practitioners, James Bamba and Mark Benavente. Both artists have collaborated on several projects and through their teaching… Read more »

Pacific Cultures: Our Year in Numbers and Storeroom Selfies!

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It has been another busy year for the Pacific Cultures team. This year as part of Ngā Toi Arts Te Papa we opened Tīvaevae: Out of the Glory Box, Te Papa’s first exhibition of Cook Islands tīvaevae. We have also worked to have have more of our collection available online and in person through exhibitions such… Read more »

Remembering Jonah Lomu (1975-2015)

Wesley College Uniform,  1990s, FE010582

We are all saddened by the passing of Jonah Lomu (1975-2015). In the last few weeks, there has been a constant flow of tributes that attest to his legacy both on and off the field. On social media some have shared their memories of meeting him while others recall waking up early to watch his… Read more »

Tokelau Language Week Five Minute Quiz 2015

Kie tau

Malo Ni! This week is Vaiaho o te Gagana Tokelau (Tokelau Language Week) and the theme this year is Tōto hau tōkiga nei, aua na tupulaga e fāi mai: Plant a seed today, for the future generation. Our work in the Pacific Cultures team is driven by similar aspirations to develop and protect our Tokelauan… Read more »

Niue Language Week Five Minute Quiz 2015

Pulou (hat), 1990s, Auckland, by Moka Poi. Purchased 1999 with New Zealand Lottery Grants Board funds. Te Papa (FE011299)

Fakaalofa lahi atu! This week is Niuean Langauge week and the theme is, “Tau tagata Niue, tau magafaoa Niue, fakaaoga e vagahau Niue – Niue people, Niue families, use vagahau Niue”. As a team we aim to use vagahau Niue in relation to our collection of Niuean artefacts. Te Papa’s Pacific Cultures collections have around 290… Read more »