Object: Vaka (outrigger canoe)
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|Title||Vaka (outrigger canoe)|
Piavale (maker/artist), 1974, Niue
Nemaia, Harry (maker/artist), 1974, Niue
Evans, Donald (maker/artist), 1974, Niue
x 1220mm (Width)
x 410mm (Height)
|Credit line||Gift of Donald T Evans, 2014|
The Niuean vaka (canoe) and the ancient tradition of vaka building, was and continues to remain integral to Niuean culture. The vaka is a physical manifestation of the connection between people, land and the sea. The most common type of Niuean vaka is that of an outrigger canoe that holds one or two people and is useful for fishing the tahi (near coastal waters) of Niue.
This vaka was made in Niue from 1973 - 1974 by respected vaka maker, Dr. Harry Nemaia, formerly Director of Health in
This vaka is significant as it was made during a time of great threat to the vaka building practice; new fishing technologies became available in the 1960s and 1970s and vaka building together with the use of vaka decreased significantly in Niue. Motorised dinghies proved easier to operate on the open sea and the quantities of fish caught were significantly higher than that of indigenous methods involving a vaka. Historically, the making of vaka was undertaken by households or family groups. From the 1960s the practise became uncommon and the profession is now reserved for specialist vaka makers who are paid for their work.
The fact that Donald transported the vaka to NZ in 1974, the same year
This vaka has a strong connection to
Tracey Evans, daughter of Donald donated the vaka to Te Papa Tongarewa in 2013 on his behalf.
Evans, J. (2009, November 12).
Haddon, A.C & Hornell, J. (1975). Canoes of
McLean, G. (2012). Barques, Banana Boats and Boeings. In S. Mallon, K. Mahina-Tuai & D. Salesa (Eds.), Tangata o le Moana:
Ryan, T. (1981). Fishing in transition on
Results from DigitalNZ
Searching 27 million digital objects from over 150 content partners across New Zealand
- Model Outrigger Canoe (Vaka) - Digital Public Library of America
- Big finale for Cook Island's Vaka Eiva outrigger canoeing festival today - Radio New Zealand
- Beaching vaka (canoe) - The University of Auckland Library
- Dismantled outrigger canoe hull at lagoon shore - The University of Auckland Library
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