Posts categorized as Pacific

Collecting the spirit of Hawai‘i through aloha shirts

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  • Kealopiko's Pua Aloalo shirt. Te Papa.
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New Zealand and Pacific collections intern Sonya Withers and history curator Claire Regnault recently travelled to Hawai‘i where they collected 83 aloha shirts with a focus on indigenous Hawaiian designers. Claire Regnault reflects on the connection these designers have with their natural environment and how this inspires their designs. Why aloha shirts? In October, Sonya Withers… Read more »

In acknowledgement of of Tuvalu Language Week which ran from Sunday 1 October – Saturday 7 October 2017, Pacific curator Rachel Yates looks at daily life in Tuvalu through five photographs taken by New Zealand photographer Thomas Andrew (1855 – 1939), who spent a significant amount of time in the Pacific region. Nine islands Whilst on a tour… Read more »

Remembering tīvaevae designer Mama Maria Teokota’i Sila (1938 – 2017)

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Pacific Collection Manager Grace Hutton and the rest of the Pacific Cultures team acknowledge the recent passing of artist and maker of tīvaevae Mama Maria Teokota’I. Kua ‘aere ki te po, Gone into the night In addition to being a very creative tīvaevae designer, Mama Maria was also a very religious and spiritual woman. She made… Read more »

The distribution of kōwhai and its close relatives throughout the Southern Hemisphere has intrigued scientists, including Charles Darwin, for over 150 years. Recent research led by Lara Shepherd has revealed more about the relationships among this iconic group of plants. Sophora sect. Edwardsia is a group of 19 species of small trees or shrubs mostly… Read more »

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)
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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
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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 »