Journeys of Rediscovery

Published: Sat 2 Dec 2006 12:40 AM
Journeys of Rediscovery
Following the grand opening of Vaka Moana the Auckland Museum brings you three of the Navigational giants from Aotearoa and the Pacific. Join us to meet Matahi Brightwell, Hector Busby and Ben Finney and hear about their re-enactment explorations and journeys of rediscovery. All three will be available for interviews.
Please ring or email Michelle Lafferty at elephant publicity to arrange: Ph: 3684180 / 027 2956450
Matahi Brightwell Tohunga Tarai Waka
Wednesday 13 December 4pm
Free with Vaka Moana exhibition entry ticket
Or $10 and $5 members
Matahi Brightwell traces his lineage directly back to Rakataura, builder of the Tainui waka, and master navigators who explored the Pacific and made the islands home thousands of years ago.
He is Ngati Toa Rangatira, Ngati Huia, Rongowhakaata, Ngati Whakaaue, Ngapuhi, Ngati Tuwharetoa and Ngati Porou.
Matahi Brightwell is a Tohunga Tarai Waka and taught at Takapuwahia marae in Toa Rangatira Wananga (1973-1981). He is currently working on the Hawaiki Nui 2 project in Moorea, French Polynesia. This double-hulled canoe will be sailing to Chile to re-enact one of the many great voyages of the ancestors. Matahi has been instrumental in the revival of traditional methods in building, navigating and sailing and is well regarded for his facilitation of waka ama wananga throughout the Pacific.
In this lecture, Matahi will focus on the genetic charts which trace the common ancestry though the islands of Tahiti, the Cook Islands and Te Ika a Maui.
The Way to Tahiti – Ke Ala i Kahiki
Ben Finney Nautical Anthropologist
Thursday 14 December 7pm
$10 and $5 members
Nautical anthropologist Ben Finney tells of his experiences in building vaka moana (voyaging canoes) and sailing them over ancient sea routes, and in nurturing and chronicling the voyaging renaissance that has followed.
Professor Emeritus Ben Finney has been teaching at the University of Hawai’i since 1970, and has also taught at the University of French Polynesia, Australian National University, International Space University and the University of California at Santa Barbara. He obtained a M.A. in anthropology at the University of Hawai’i (1959) and a Ph.D. in anthropology at Harvard University (1964).
He has received many prestigious awards for his research on both ancient seafaring and modern spacefaring, which has taken him throughout Polynesia and Micronesia, as well as to more exotic places such as NASA’s Johnson Space Center and Russia’s Star City. In 1985 he built Nalehia, his first ocean sailing canoe, and in 1973 founded the Polynesian Voyaging Society to build the voyaging canoe Hokule’a and sail her to Tahiti to challenge armchair theorists who claimed that Polynesians could not have deliberately made long voyages. In 1985 he sailed aboard Hokule’a to Aotearoa, where he and his crewmates were welcomed at the Marae Waitangi.
Film Screening and Talk by Hekenukumai Busby
Kupe: Voyaging by the Stars (1993) 50min
Friday 15 December 7.30pm
Saturday 16 December 3pm
Free with Vaka Moana exhibition entry ticket
Or $10 and $5 members.. Bookings essential. Phone 09 306 7048
An opportunity to meet Hector Busby and view the exhibition prior to the documentary screening.
In collaboration with NZ Film Archive, Auckland Museum is proud to screen ‘Kupe: Voyaging by the Stars’. Hekenukumai Busby rediscovers ancient star navigation traditions during a 1,800 mile ocean voyage in his traditional double-hulled waka, Te Aurere, retracing the path of early explorer Kupe a thousand years earlier across the Pacific Ocean to Aotearoa. The design of Te Aurere is based on the Hokulea from Hawaii, whose skipper Nainoa Thompson and his star navigator teacher, Mau Piailug both assist with designing and building the waka. Director: Peter Turei, Producer: Ian John, Production Company: Nimrod Films

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