Tales of Taonga: The Cult of the Arioi
They were a society within a society, but existed outside of it - not bound by the laws of the people. The Arioi. A unique Tahitian group known for their cultural prowess, and for the killing of children...
Tales of Taonga - Fau Fale
The traditional fale designers in Samoa - the Tufuga Fau Fale are revered as age old knowledge holders. This precious art form is now being passed down and re-energised by groups of young Samoans, who are building new forms of the ancient Samoan fale.
Tales of Taonga - Hikule'o goddess figurines
This documentary on the Tongan Goddess Figurines takes a deep look at Tonga's most infamous and notorious goddess - Hikule'o. After being shunned from Tonga after the introduction of Christianity, the Goddess Figurines (of Hikule'o) were ordered to be destroyed, and the worship of Hikule'o was illegalised. Her own origin story is one of grave bondage and restriction, alongside the traumatic removal of her religion from Tongan culture - it signifies the difficult question that Tongan's often find trouble answering; who are we and what should we believe in?
Tales of Taonga - Manumea
"It's part of our Samoan culture and part of our heritage" The Manumea bird was made famous by MaryJane Mckibbin-Schwenke's popular siva for Miss South Pacific*, but this treasured bird that is only found in Samoa, is now critically endangered. Find out more about why we should care about this uniquely special pigeon. . * Choreographed by Peter Tamasese, Phylesha Brown-Acton, Cecilia Keil & Ken Moala
Tales of Taonga - Tapa of the Pacific
Historically when we were first born it cradled our bodies. It provided cover, warmth and protection and was one of our most highly valued posessions showing wealth, status and celebration ... our Tapa of the Moana. This cloth has migrated with us throughout the Pacific but how has this cloth endured time and what is its significance and value to the different islands today? This is our taonga across all Moana Nui a Kiwa and these are some of the tales of our tapa makers.
Tales of Taonga - The Kuki Airani Church Hats
Decorating the head is a significant and often tapu concept in Polynesia. In the Cook Islands today this ranges from using the natural flora and fauna to make head ei, to the beautifully woven hats. This tradition has carried on to Kuki Airani communities in Aotearoa, who have used many new materials in weaving these hats for celebration and special occasions. In this story two young Kuki Airani women explore the lives of their Pasifika mama’s in Ponsonby from the 1960’s and the hats they wore through the decades.
Tales of Taonga - The Tau'olunga
One of most treasured heritage art forms in the Pacific is our dance – and expression of our social roles, status, our joy for life and our soul. In Samoa and Tonga one of the most revered dances is the Taualuga – the dance of life. "For me it's always an experience ... every time I perform it, it's a different feeling and it's a different moment. I'm dancing dances that were done by my grandmother and my auntys from back then" - Sesilia Pusiaki
Tales of Taonga - Tupaia
As a key part of the history of the Moana, the story of one of our most travelled ancient navigators has come to the fore. This is the extraordinary story of Tupaia, the Tahitian 'Arioi' master navigator who travelled with Captain Cook around the Pacific and was the key for Cook to communicate with Pacific people. Tupaia made a map of the Pacific, which was considered 'unreadable' until just a few years ago, here is Tupaia Polynesian view of the world ...
Tales of Taonga - Ukulele
When it comes to treasures of the Pacific you can't go past the humble ukulele. The very sound of this instrument is synonymous with this part of the world. Of course places like Hawai'i, the Cook Islands and Tahiti have a very strong tradition and it's making a return to Samoa. Oscar Kightley takes us to the village of Poutasi in Samoa to have a look at this taonga.
Tales of Taonga - Yaqona
Whatever way you look at it, it brings people together ... it's the brew of the gods! Kava - considered the drink of the gods in the Pacific. The age old rituals around this treasured drink are different in every island - and in Fiji the yaqona circle is a vital part of culture. Here is some talanoa from around the Tanoa.