Posts written by Safua Akeli

Tongan ngatu (tapa cloth): a visual record

As part of celebrating Tongan Language Week: Uike Kātonga’i ‘o e Lea Faka-Tonga (1-8 September) the Pacific Cultures team are highlighting some of the Tongan items in Te Papa’s collection. This is the  fourth blog in our series. Tongan ngatu also known as tapa cloth is an important part of Tongan art and tradition. Te Papa’s collection of about 60… Read more »

Mu’umu’u styles from a Cook Islands mama

To celebrate Cook Islands language week (6 -10 August), the Pacific Cultures team are blogging about collection items from the Cook Islands. These mu’umu’u (dress) are part of a number of dresses acquired by the Pacific Cultures collection in 2009 from Tepaeru Tereora. Tereora was the fifth National President for Pacific Allied (Women’s) Council Inspires Faith Ideals Concerning All Incorporation… Read more »

Battle shields from Chimbu (Simbu): a new acquisition

These battle shields from Chimbu (Simbu) in the Papua New Guinea Highlands were collected by a New Zealand couple who spent nearly a decade teaching in the country until their return to New Zealand in 2009. The shields are significant for their cultural value and use in warfare among the Chimbu. They also have a… Read more »

Recalling the splendour of Samoan oratory: Lauaki Namulau’ulu Mamoe

To celebrate le vaiaso o le gagana Sämoa (Sämoan language week) the Pacific Cultures curators are highlighting stories related to cultural treasures from Sämoa. This image of Lauaki Namulau’ulu Mamoe (b. 1850s? – d. 1915) taken by photographer Thomas Andrew is dated 1909. This was the same year Lauaki was exiled to Saipan, in the Northern… Read more »

Remembering Malifa School in Samoa

  • Malifa handbook; FE010588; Te Papa
  • Malifa handbook FE010588 002
  • Malifa handbook FE010588 002
  • Malifa handbook; FE010588; Te Papa

To celebrate le vaiaso o le gagana Sämoa (Samoan language week) I have decided to draw attention to a small handbook which was gifted to the museum in 1954. The front cover of this handbook indicates that it was presented to Mr and Mrs D A J Rutherford in 1936. The Rutherfords had arrived in… Read more »

Fresh on the bookshelf – Tangata o le Moana: New Zealand and the People of the Pacific

Aotearoa New Zealand is home to a large Pasifika population. This illustrated collection of essays is the first of its kind to tell their stories – from the legendary feats of the ancestors of modern Māori, to the politically explosive dawn raids of the 1970s, and beyond. This beautiful book is lavishly illustrated with hundreds of historical… Read more »

New Exhibiton – Oceania: Early Encounters at Te Papa

This coming Saturday, 6 August 2011 is the opening of the combined Oceania exhibition between Te Papa and Wellington City Gallery. Te Papa’s exhibition titled Early Encounters will showcase a range of taonga and objects from History, Maori, Pacific Cultures, Art and Natural Environment collections. The three month long show will be open during the… Read more »