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Talanoa: Ancient Futures Project

“Folaloa e falā kae alea e kāinga”

(Roll out the mat so our kin can gather and dialogue)

Hosted in partnership with University of Auckland, the Ancient Futures Projects research team comprises of Tongan Artists and specialists in Tongan history, material culture and museum collections.

In the company of honoured Tongan artists Sopolemalama Filipe Tohi and Dagmar Dyck and academic collaborators Phyllis Herda, Billie Lythberg, Arne Perminow, Andy Mills and Wonu Veys; Talanoa: Ancient Futures was held in conclusion to a three-week tour of collections, where Tongan works are held, in Europe and the United Kingdom. In*ter*is*land Collective provides connection and a space for people to come together to talk art, history and the future.

Talanoa is not just to talk but it means to bring different people, ideas and words together with ofa, mafana, malie and faka’apa’apa (love, warmth, laughter, respect). The evening started with time together to eat a feast of baked kumara, green bananas and fresh pork salad and ended with much discussion and sharing around identities, inspiration, memories and current projects. This is the way of the our people all throughout the MOANA.

EUROPEAN & UK COLLECTIONS VISITED: Weltmuseum Wien, Vienna; Grassi Museum, Leipzig; The Forster Collection in Dessau-Woerlitz; Etnografiska Museet, Stockholm; Muśee du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac, Paris; Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, Cambridge; British Museum, London; Pitt Rivers Museum, Oxford; and the Oceania exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts, London.

Words & Images: Jess Palalagi


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