Established 2014 Aotearoa New Zealand

Led by Chris CHARTERIS. Artists: Mwemwetaake ATANIBERU, Rareti ATANIBERU, Louisa HUMPHRY, Lizzy LECKIE, Jeff SMITH, Kaetaeta WATSON / Armour makers: Tetairua Ataniberu / Bateriki Nabeia / String makers: Rakera Teitibora / Tiobia and Tiebane Boiaki / Koinawa, Tebunginako and Nuotaea Villages Abaiang, Kiribati / Support: Kiribati Australia Association and Manokan Kiribati. The artists would like to acknowledge the support of the late Teresia Teaiwa. Tungaru: The Kiribati Project has been assisted by Creative New Zealand.

Tungaru is a collaborative project inspired by the strong connections that New Zealand born artist Chris Charteris has made quite recently with his ancestral homeland and extended i-Kiribati family. Raised in a Pakeha family, Charteris initially believed he was of Māori heritage and trained as a carver. Later discovering he was of Kiribati and Fijian heritage reinforced his sense of the importance of ‘knowing who we are and where we come from’. The indigenous name for Kiribati is Tungaru, which means to gather together in a joyous way. Returning to this name for their project, Charteris and collaborating artists come together to celebrate the resilience of the islands’ ancestral culture as well as the contemporary concerns faced by its people. Drawing on knowledge held by community elders and museum collections and creating artworks in response to these, this group reflects on the nature of culture and identity in a global world.

Tungaru has also worked with the QAGOMA Children's Art Centre to develop a project for APT9 Kids

All Artists

Gallery 3.3 Marica Sourris & James C. Sourris AM Gallery