This special talk sees the return of Kura Pounamu Exhibition Curator Dougal Austin (Kāti Māmoe, Kāi Tahu, Waitaha) to Nelson, as he celebrates the release of his new book, Te Hei Tiki (Te Papa Press).
Using Kura Pounamu as a backdrop, Dougal discusses how this exhibition influenced the writing of the book. He will look at key pieces on display – including the background to their selection – alongside other hei tiki outside of the exhibition critical to our understanding of this exalted Māori adornment.
Inspired by his work on Kura Pounamu, Dougal’s book is the culmination of around ten years of thorough research into the hei tiki art form, and marks the break in a 50-year hiatus of book publications dedicated solely to this art form since H.D. Skinner’s 1966 booklet Hei-Tiki (Otago Museum Trust Board).
Copies of Te Hei Tiki will be available to purchase ($60) as part of a book signing activity on the night, or on an ongoing basis through the Museum’s retail space.
Kaitiaki of traditional pounamu taonga are invited to bring along and share their taonga with Dougal and Museum staff for discussion after the talk.