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. Today’s blog is the last of our series. Tongan fangufangu (nose flutes) are beautifully crafted musical instruments. Historically, fangufangu were used to awakenRead more

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. TeRead more

This week is Tongan Language Week – Uike Kātoanga’i ‘o e Lea Faka-Tonga. This is the third blog post where the Pacific Cultures team highlight collection items that relate to Tongan language and culture. In Tongan Language week it is difficult to look past the contributions of Tonga’s Queen Sälote (1900–65)Read more

This week is Tongan Language Week – Uike Kātoanga’i ‘o e Lea Faka-Tonga. This is the second blog post for this week where the Pacific Cultures team highlight collection items that relate to Tongan language and culture.  This is a kumete, a wooden bowl used in Tongan communities for the preparationRead more

This week is Tongan Language Week – Uike Kātoanga’i ‘o e Lea Faka-Tonga. Over the next five days the Pacific Cultures team will be blogging about collection items from Tonga that relate to Tongan language and culture. The week is promoted by the Aotearoa Tongan Teachers Association in partnership with theRead more

In March 2009, Te Papa was gifted a small but significant collection of objects from Derek J. Wilson. This collection included two Tongan fangufangu or nose flutes that were made from bamboo. Historically, fangufangu were used to awaken the Tongan royalty from their sleep. The newly acquired fangufangu, have intactRead more

Paperskin – the art of tapa cloth exhibition is full of many wonderful tapa artworks.  But one Tongan tapa cloth (ngatu) in Te Papa’s collection is amazing because of its size – it is more than 22 metres long and over 4 metres wide. We have never been able to displayRead more