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Tokelau artists to share their weaving and carving skills

20 Oct 2016

This content is tagged as Pacific arts .

NEWS

Vasefenua (Vase) Reupena A master carver from the atoll of Atafu led the carving of this large traditional vaka for the Atafu community in Porirua, a project funded by Creative New Zealand which earned the Atafu community the Heritage Arts Award 2013

Four leading heritage artists from Tokelau will be demonstrating their artistic skills and sharing traditional knowledge at free presentations and talks in Wellington and Auckland as part of an annual Pacific cultural and artistic exchange coinciding with Tokelau Language Week.

Creative New Zealand celebrates the 5th anniversary of its Pacific Cultural Exchange Programme during the language week, 24 -30 October. 

The cultural and artistic exchange programme has previously brought master heritage artists from Samoa (2012), Tonga (2013), Niue (2014) and the Cook Islands (2015) to Aotearoa to help maintain and continue the transmission of Pasifika traditional cultural knowledge.

This year’s Tokelau delegation includes a master carver and builder of traditional vaka and three weavers.

The cultural exchange programme is being delivered in partnership with the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa Auckland War Memorial Museum and Fresh Gallery in Ōtara and, for the first time, Pātaka Art + Museum in Porirua. The later will present a programme specifically targeting the high number of Tokelau peoples who live in the region.

"Creative New Zealand is in its fifth year of supporting the exchange and sharing of Pacific art between New Zealand and Pacific countries. This year's project provides a wonderful opportunity for Tokelauan master artists to join with New Zealand Pacific artists to exchange skills and cultural knowledge. Such exchanges provide valuable enrichment of the Pacific arts and culture that is already a major feature of New Zealand's arts landscape," says Arts Council member Caren Rangi.

The delegation will share their skills in heritage arts knowledge and expertise during free public demonstrations and talks hosted by Porirua’s Pātaka Art + Museum 11am - 3pm on Thursday 27th October.

Ōtara’s Fresh Gallery will host the artists in a free public programme on 31 October. They will also tour Auckland War Memorial Museum’s Māori and Pacific collections.

The visiting artists will be special guests at the annual Creative New Zealand Arts Pasifika Awards in Wellington on Wednesday 26 October and tour the Māori and Pacific collections at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

The 2016 Master Artists from the Tokelau Islands are;

Makalita Ineleo (Nukunonu): A master weaver from the atoll Nukunonu, Makalita is part of the Fatupaepae Women’s group. Makalita represented Tokelau at the Festival of Pacific Arts 2016 in Guam.

Hili (Niu) Sakalia (Nokunonu): A master weaver from Nukunonu, Niu is a member of the respected Fatupaepae Women’s group and brings a wealth of knowledge and experience in her artform.

Vasefenua (Vase) Reupena (Atafu): A master carver from the atoll of Atafu, Vase led the carving of a large traditional vaka for the Atafu community in Porirua, a project funded by Creative New Zealand and earned the Atafu community the Heritage Arts Award 2013.

Peletava Gasolaga (Fakaofo): A master weaver from the atoll of Fakaofo, Peletava brings expertise in special traditional skills from her island.

The guests are hosted through Creative New Zealand’s international Pasifika cultural and artistic exchange programme, an initiative designed to support Pacific communities preserve, develop and transmit their customary artistic practices.

For media enquiries and further information please contact:

Linda Niccol
Communications Adviser, Creative New Zealand
P 04 498 0727 | M+64 21 335 916 | Linda.Niccol@creativenz.govt.nz