RADIO NEW ZEALAND INTERNATIONAL
A curator working with Malagan artworks at New Zealand’s Otago Museum says he has been told by local people that there is no need to return the pieces.
Malagan art is created as part of traditional ceremonies to honour people who have died, and is traditionally destroyed or given away.
But Jenny Homerang from the Re-Creating the Village organisation says sometimes the works are preserved to be used again
“There has never been any museum that I know of, that has tried to work with the local communities from which these objects have been removed,” Ms Homerang said.
“We’ve never had any kind of community outreach programs with the museums, or the museums with us, there’s no kind of contact with us. It’s almost as if they’re saying to us that we don’t exist.”