Tapa, or barkcloth, is an important textile in the Pacific. Tapa is made from the beaten inner bark of some plant species, but once the tapa is made then identifying which plant species was used is difficult. Our genetics researcher Lara Shepherd teamed up with Catherine Smith from the University of Otago and colleagues to create a DNA reference database for identifying the plants used to make tapa.
Herbert Ian Fetaiai Bartley, Te Papa Audience Engagement Facilitator writes: Working at Te Papa for 5 years, I still get really excited visiting the Pacific Collection Store room. Each time, I always spot something I have never seen before and ask our knowledgeable Pacific Cultures team loads of questions. A lot
This week is Niuean Language Week. The theme for this year’s celebration is ‘Leveki mo e Fakaaoga e Vagahau Niue’ | ‘Treasure and Use the Niue Language’. Pacific Cultures curators will be posting blogs related to Niue throughout the week and highlighting treasures from Te Papa’s collections. Today’s blogpost is
This week is Te Epetoma o te Reo Māori Kuki Airani – Cook Islands Māori Language week. the theme for this week is , “Tōku Reo Tōku Tango: My Language Is My Foundation”. As part of this weeks celebrations, Te Papa’s Pacific Cultures curators (and a guest writer or two)
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
2011 Māori and Pacific Textile Symposium The beating of aute, or tapa, is a heartbeat that resounds across the ocean of Kiwa. The harakeke of Aotearoa, symbolising family, acknowledges the relationship of the Pacific people as one, through weaving. These genealogical and material connections will be explored at the inaugural
Paperskin – the art of tapa cloth is closing this weekend, on Sunday 12 September. If you haven’t been to see these amazing tapa works, now is the time to come into Te Papa. It will also be your last chance for some time to see the 22 metre Tongan ngatu (tapa), made in
Music and museum exhibitions haven’t always gone together – all part of the old idea that a museum should be a solemn and silent place. Today, sound compositions in exhibitions are being used as part of the visitor experience. They offer a different way to approach the things on display – one