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Collection highlights

Master weaver keeps alive the spirit of Niue

Makataone Pilokolu

Niue Master Weaver Makataone Pilokolu.

Photo: Zinzi Scott Falanitule, 2013.

The weaver of the bag below, Makataone (Maka) Pilokolu was born on 25 February 1929 in the village of Alofi on Niue Island. At the age of 10, Maka learnt to weave; she would often weave in the local caves to escape the hot Niue sun.

In the 1950s she boarded the shipTofua bound for Auckland where she and her first husband settled in Parnell. Maka began to feel homesick and would look up at the stars in the sky at night and dream of Niue.

Maka joined several weaving groups where she made many good friends - they would weave, sing, talk and laugh. Weaving kept the Niue spirit alive and strong in Maka's heart.

Maka's style of weaving is unique to her family yet she has created many original patterns, her precise detail and use of colour is bold and distinctive. Weaving is Maka's passion.

Watch a short video about Makataone Pilokolu

Kato Pelesetiki (Plastic Bag) by Niue Master Weaver Makataone Pilokolu.

Purchased at Pasifika Festival 2001. AM 55842.

Makataone Pilokolu (Tuapa / Mutalau)

Ko ia ne tufuga e kato nei ko Makataone (Maka) Pilokolu. Fanau a ia he aho 25 Fepuali, 1929 ke he maaga ko Alofi, Niue. Ne kamata fakaako a Maka ke taute e tau tufuga lima he hogofulu haana a tau tau moui. Fa mahani a ia ke finatu ke taute haana a tau tufuga lima ke he tau ana tia ke malū mo e nakai malamala e tau lau fā he tau vahā vela mo e laa he motu.

Ne tuku fenoga  mai a ia mo e haana a iki tokoua fakamua ki Okalana he tau tau 1950 maaga. Ne takele mau a laua ke he matakavi na ko Panela (Parnell). Ko e tau po oti kua fakataiga tumau atu a ia ke he tau fetū he lagi likoliko mo e toka loto tumau atu ke he motu.

Ka ko e magaaho ne fakalataha mo e tutaki atu a ia ke he falu a tau matakau tufuga lima. Kua maeke ia Maka ke fakatuuta tumau mo e haana a tau kapitiga foou, ke uhu e tau lologo mo e oloi e tau mata alelo ka e taute e tau tufuga lima. Kua eke e tau mena pehē na mo fakalagalaga tumau aki e manamanatuaga haana atu ke he motu.

Pulotu lahi e magafaoa ha Maka ke he tau tufuga lima kehekehe mo e kua kehe lahi mai foki ke fakatatai atu ke he falu. Maeke ke kitia e kehe ia ke he falu he haana a tau tufuga lima mo e tau lanu ne fa fakaaoga e ia. Ko e haana a matakai a nei ha ko ia ko e katiga mo e taha pulotu ke he tau tufuga lima kehekehe.

See the kato pelesetiki on display

You can see the kato pelesetiki in our Pacific Lifeways gallery.


Written from information provided by Makataone Pilokolu (Tuapa / Mutalau) with her image provided by her granddaughter Zinzi Scott Falanitule. Translated to the Niue language by Ioane Aleke Fa’avae (Mutalau).