Public Interest Journalism funded through NZ On Air
Tāmaki Paenga Hira Auckland War Memorial Museum has opened a new centre, Te Aho Mutunga Kore textiles centre. Te Aho Mutunga Kore which translates to the eternal thread was created with the intention to return agency back to Māori and Pasifika communities by carrying out community projects and activations which allow access to cultural treasures stored at the museum.
Te Aho Mutunga Kore’s community navigator, Jasmine Tuiā, Pacific collections manager, Jimmy Mai’ai’i, and storage technician, Justine Treadwell, opened up the centre for this year’s Tongan Language Week to display the Tongan koloa and share history and knowledge with visitors from the community.
The koloa on display included Tongan ngatu (decorated bark cloth), helu (head comb), kiekie (waist garment) and handwoven kato (basket) and i’i (fan).
Chantal Knowles from Te Aho Mutunga Kore said that their team has plans in place to hold more community events that will strengthen the ties between Māori and Pasifika communities and their material cultural heritage during future language weeks.