Fijian masi (tapa) has customarily been used for ceremonial occasions such as weddings or the conferring of a chiefly title.
Fijians decorate masi by stencilling. Originally they made stencils from banana leaves and other large leaves. These days, x-ray film, or the plastic from rice bags, is proving much more durable.
One type of distinctively Fijian masi is masi kesa. This is a white cloth decorated with brown and black geometric design motifs, repeated from the outer edge of the cloth towards the centre.
This collection narrative is based on the Tapa: Pacific Style exhibition on display at Te Papa, level 4 (September 2009 - September 2010).