Posts categorized as Māori

Mere pounamu (greenstone weapon) named Whakaae-whenua. Te Āti Awa iwi (tribe) (ME024035)

  • William Strutt, 'The Maori Widow - Rawiri's Grave', 1855. E-453-f-002-1. Alexander Turnbull Library.
  • William Strutt, 'The Maori Widow - Rawiri's Grave', 1855. E-453-f-002-1. Alexander Turnbull Library.
  • Mere pounamu (greenstone weapon) named Whakaae-whenua. Te Āti Awa iwi (tribe). Te Papa (ME024035)
  • Memorial Cross. Margaret Marks

Whakaae-whenua – a recent acquisition Part of our roles as curators is to acquire, or purchase, taonga Māori (Māori treasures) to further strengthen and develop Te Papa’s collection. When considering taonga tūturu (customary taonga) for acquisition, it’s the interesting, the novel, and the extraordinary that we tend to focus on these days – not surprising… Read more »

‘Pīata’ – a cloak returns home

Descendants of Rāwinia Ngāwaka Tūkeke gather around the kahu kiwi before the blessing inside the wharenui Te Poho o Kahungunu. Rongomaraeroa marae, Porangahau. 6 May 2012.

He kanohi kitea, he hokinga mahara. To see a face is to stir the memory. On Sunday 6 May 2012, a beautiful kahu kiwi cloak from the Te Papa collection, was named by her descendants as part of a special church service held at Rongomaraeroa marae, Porangahau. Te Papa Press recently published a cloak book… Read more »

Arnold Manaaki Wilson

Arnold Wilson - Te Papa Press Publication Taiawhio - 29 April 20

Arnold Manaaki Wilson 1928–2012 Ngāi Tūhoe and Te Arawa iwi (tribes) Artist Ahakoa ruarua noa o kupu i takoto Anō te rite he whakatauākī te reka I puta ai āu mahi tohungatanga I runga i te tatangi o te kī. Tirohia mai rā aku pewa I taurite tēnei ka tītoko Kei te ngaru whakateo E… 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 »

Behind the scenes: installing the Collecting Contemporary exhibition

  • Leftovers
  • Patching up Gallary Walls
  • Jim Allen install February 2012
  • Installing Suspension Rig for Jim Allen’s Works

Over the last couple of weeks, we have been busy installing an updated selection of works in the Collecting Contemporary exhibition on Level 5. Collecting Contemporary is an exhibition featuring some of the contemporary New Zealand art works that Te Papa acquired between 2006 and 2011. Read more about Collecting Contemporary As a curator, the… Read more »

More stories than you can shake a tokotoko at

Sorry about the length of time between posts, I’ve been juggling a bunch of different gigs and research duties. The fun don’t stop! But regardless of my shameless plea about time poverty, I better get this blog back up off its flatline….eep. I’ve only been a curator for 7 months and even if you were the brainiest… Read more »

William Colenso Bicentenary – conference registrations open

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This year marks the bicentenary of William Colenso’s birth (1811-1899). In celebration our colleagues at the Hawke’s Bay Museum and Art Gallery, Napier are hosting a bicentennial event this coming November (9 – 13 November 2011). The aim of the bicentenary is to explore the highly complex character of Colenso ‘in the round’ – as ‘a talented polymath, at… Read more »

Plants cultivated by Māori

  • Southern Wairarapa karaka grove. © Leon Perrie.
  • Southern Wairarapa whau. © Leon Perrie.
  • Arthropodium bifurcatum in a garden at Victoria University. © Leon Perrie.
  • Southern Wairarapa rengarenga. © Leon Perrie.

Alongside the plants brought from the tropical Pacific, it is thought that Māori cultivated at least a handful of New Zealand plant species. Massey University’s Lara Shepherd is investigating several such plants: karaka (Corynocarpus laevigatus), rengarenga (Arthropodium cirratum), and whau (Entelea arborescens). Karaka in Te Papa’s Bush City. Karaka, rengarenga, and whau are all only found… Read more »