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Sat 17 Jun 2017, 3:30pm–4:30pm

Where: Otago Museum, 419 Great King Street, Dunedin, Otago

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free

Listed by: Otago Museum

Grasping the ephemeral – Extracting cultural data from Māori textiles.
Expert talk.

University of Otago Senior Lecturer Dr Catherine Smith illustrates how the analysis of Māori textiles from South Island, New Zealand provides insight into pre-contact lifeways and the value of using textile artefacts as a source of cultural data.

Because of the centrality of textiles to all cultures, archaeological textiles are important sources of cultural information, and their scientific analysis can tell us about social boundaries, trade relationships, and technological complexity.

Dr Catherine Smith is a Senior Lecturer in the Centre for Materials, Science and Technology at the University of Otago where she teaches cultural aspects of textiles.

Catherine is an objects conservator, specialising in objects from indigenous and world cultures, and has worked in cultural institutions and private practice in Australia and New Zealand. She leads a research team that works on conservation science and materials identification projects and is a member of the Indigenous Science Research Theme at the University of Otago.

Catherine is also principal investigator of a Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Fund research project entitled ‘Dressing for survival and success: what pre-European Māori wore for adaptive realisation’. The project involves the analysis and examination of the earliest pre-contact Māori textiles and the development of innovative techniques in provenancing and materials investigation.

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