Posts categorized as Pacific

Cook Islands Language Week: Language, culture, and the impact of ‘Slavers in Paradise’

  • C.003104. Arrival of supplies on Atiu Island.  George Crummer, circa 1914
  • O.037817 Beach Penrhyn.  Andrew Thomas, 1886, Penrhyn Atoll (Tongareva)
  • IMG_0921
  • Manihiki O.037810

Curator Pacific Cultures Rachel Yates takes a look at the book Slavers in Paradise, and a lesser-known episode of Cook Islands and Pacific history. As part of the lead up to Te ‘Epetoma o te reo Māori Kūki ‘Āirani (Cook Islands Language week), I made a list of potential reads, mainly historical non-fiction books featuring writers or stories… Read more »

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 »

Spotlight on The Yandall Sisters, Samoan doo-wop superstars

  • L to R: Pauline, Adele and Mary.  Retrieved from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SYsVakylfBI
  • CA001147/013/0001/0004; Sweet Soul Music Costume Design Drawings
  • CA001147/013/0001/0010; Sweet Soul Music Costume Design Drawings
  • Yandall 2

In a nod to Samoan Language Week – which started on Sunday and runs through to Saturday – and to round off New Zealand Music Month, Curator Pacific Cultures Rachel Yates put the spotlight on the Yandall Sisters, who ruled the New Zealand ’70s music scene. Do you like good music? That sweet soul music? If you answered ‘yeah,… Read more »

New Zealand Music Month: The legacy of Bob Marley

  • O.018215; A Certain Kind of Past - Glade House, Auckland; 1983-1984; Browning, Ken.  (Photographic image of an unidentified young man - with tattoos on his left arm - as seen in his bedroom, a number of posters adorn the back wall including one of Bob Marley)
  • O.018215; A Certain Kind of Past - Glade House, Auckland; 1983-1984; Browning, Ken. (Photographic image of an unidentified young man - with tattoos on his left arm - as seen in his bedroom, a number of posters adorn the back wall including one of Bob Marley)
  • GH024645; Poster, 'Those cops are heading towards us!!'; early 1980s; Wellington Media Collective. (One badge says Bob Marley, one of the woman has dreadlocks and the colour combination of red, gold and green is present)
  • Toni (left) and Brian Fonoti in London on their way to Ethiopia. 1988.  Credit: Toni Fonoti collection.  Retrieved from http://www.audioculture.co.nz/people/toni-fonoti/image/10868

It’s New Zealand Music Month! Rachel Yates, Curator Pacific Cultures, looks at the influence of Bob Marley on the musical landscape of New Zealand. Since 2001, driven by the New Zealand Music Commission, the month of May has been dedicated to the promotion and celebration of local New Zealand artists and music. As part of… Read more »

Conserving plastics: why you should keep your Barbie in the fridge

Two 70s Barbies wearing 70s outfits. Their faces are a much more yellowy/green colour than their bodies

Many people believe that plastic items are indestructible and will last forever. But what if you learnt this wasn’t the case? Conservator, Nirmala Balram, gives us an insight into the science of plastic deterioration and how you should look after your prized plastic possessions. So much plastic The world of plastics is huge. Plastics are… Read more »

Opinion: why we should beware of the word ‘traditional’

Portrait of Albert Wendt; 1996; Photographer: Hamish McDonald

In 1994, four years before the opening of Te Papa, Samoan novelist and scholar Albert Wendt was an advisor for the planned Pacific exhibitions. He requested that we abandon the use of terms like ‘traditional art’ in our labels and display signage. ‘Traditional means nothing to me!’ he said. At the time, I didn’t understand… Read more »

The changing art of tatau: Samoan tattooing

Two Samoan men tattoo a man lying on the floor

Currently on level 5 at Te Papa, the exhibition Whakarakei | Adorned, brings together paintings, prints, and cultural treasures to explore the art of adornment in Māori and Pacific cultures. In the latest issue of Te Papa’s online art magazine, Off the wall, Rebecca Rice and Nina Tonga asked Sean Mallon, Senior Curator Pacific Cultures,… Read more »