Culture Stories


He Rau Mahara – Honouring our tīpuna who served in the Great War

The blessing and unveiling of He Rau Mahara, a Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu publication paying tribute to the Ngāi Tahu soldiers of WW1, was a chance for those descendants of veterans interviewed to celebrate their Papa, Pōua or great uncle and reflect on the trials they faced in the Great War. He Rau Mahara,…

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Ngāi Tahu rangatahi feel the wairua

The recent success of the Kotahi Mano Wawata Rakatahi Symposium reveals the rising number of culturally competent rangatahi who are hungry for forums to celebrate and connect with their Ngāi Tahutanga. To have over 100 rangatahi contributing In bilingual workshops marks a significant milestone for Kotahi Mano Kāika, which ran the symposium in Ōtautahi from…

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Warming the Nohoaka Toi

In early September a group of Ngāi Tahu artists came together to occupy Toi Moroki Centre of Contemporary Art (CoCA) in Ōtautahi and create the first major group showing of contemporary Ngāi Tahu art in 14 years. By creating an exhibition based on the principles of a nohoaka, the Paemanu Ngāi Tahu Contemporary Visual Arts…

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First Waitangi Tribunal Hearing of the Ngāi Tahu Claim

Today marks the 30th anniversary of the first Waitangi Tribunal Hearing into the Ngāi Tahu Claim. On 17 August 1987, the Waitangi Tribunal commenced its first hearing into the Ngāi Tahu Claim. The hearing began with a pōwhiri at Tuahiwi Marae, before moving the next day to Rangiora High School for the remainder of the…

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Banks Peninsula Deeds of Purchase

The Banks Peninsula claims consisted of three ‘purchases’ by the Crown (Port Cooper 1849, Port Levy 1849, and Akaroa 1856). The background against which these three Deeds were signed is complicated. The French claimed to have purchased the land from Ngāi Tahu by way of two deeds of sale in 1838 and 1840. At the…

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The Otago Deed, 1844

The Otago Deed of Purchase, 31 July 1844, is the oldest of the official Ngāi Tahu land purchase deeds. It conveyed land to the New Zealand Company for the Scottish settlement of New Edinburgh, later renamed Otago. The Deed was signed by 23 Māori signatories and two ‘proxies’ and saw Ngāi Tahu sell over 400,000…

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Simon Kaan – Ngā Ringa Toi o Tahu

After 12 months in the making, Te Rūnanga o Ngāī Tahu launch Ngā Ringa Toi o Tahu, a web series of eight mini art documentaries exploring the practice and success of a number of talented New Zealand artists who also happen to be Ngāi Tahu. The series kicks off today with Dunedin artist Simon Kaan….

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Pounamu taonga showcased in Paris

Earlier this month an exhibition of more than 200 pounamu taonga opened at Musée du quai Branly-Jacques Chirac, in Paris. The exhibition was created by Te Papa with collaboration from Ngāi Tahu and features pounamu taonga from all tribal areas of New Zealand.  The exhibition is called ‘La pierre sacrée des Māori’ (the sacred Māori…

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