Comprising thousands of islands and hundreds of cultural groups, Polynesia and Micronesia cover a large part of the vast Pacific Ocean, from the dramatic mountains of Hawaii to the small, flat coral islands of Kiribati. The Pacific Arts of Polynesia and Micronesia offers a superb introduction to the rich artistic traditions of these two regions, traditions that have had a considerable impact on modern western art through the influence of artists such as Gauguin. After an introduction to Polynesian and Micronesian art separately, the book focuses on the artistic types, styles, and concepts shared by the two island groups, thereby placing each in its wider cultural context. From the textiles of Tonga to the canoes of Tahiti, Adrienne Kaeppler sheds light on religious and sacred rituals and objects, carving, architecture, tattooing, personal ornaments, basket-making, clothing, textiles, fashion, the oral arts, dance, music and musical instruments--even canoe-construction--to provide the ultimate introduction to these rich and vibrant cultures. Each chapter begins with a quote from an indigenous person from one of the island areas covered in the book and features both historic and contemporary works of art. A timeline for migration into the Pacific includes the latest information from archaeology, as well as the influx of explorers and missionaries and important exhibitions and other artistic events. With more than one hundred illustrations--most in full color--this volume offers a stimulating and insightful account of two dynamic artistic cultures.
About the Author
Adrienne L. Kaeppler is Curator of Oceanic Ethnology at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. She has carried out field research in Tonga, Hawai`i, and other parts of the Pacific.