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Subject: Tapa


From: Mitchell Bishop <mbishop<-a>
Date: Wednesday, March 9, 2005
Hartmut Kutzke <h.kutzke [at] uni-bonn__de> writes

>We are working on the conservation of a Tapa from Hawaii. Do anyone
>have information about the impregnation (oils, waxes, resins etc.)
>of such tapas? And on the binding media for pigments used in
>traditional Hawaiian artcraft? Furthermore, we are looking for a IR
>spectrum of candlenut.

In regard to the discussion on tapa and binders used in Hawai'i I
have the following thoughts.

Valerie Free is a good person to contact but you might also contact
Joy Keeney at the Getty Conservation Institute who has worked with a
traditional tapa maker in Hawaii and done some analysis of gums on
historic tapa. T. Rose Holdcraft is also a good person to talk to
and worked with Joy on some of the analysis.

As far as literature goes, probably the two best sources for plant
use in Hawaii are:

    Abbott, Isabella Aiona.
    Laa'au Hawai'i: traditional Hawaiian uses of plants.
    Honolulu, Hawaii: Bishop Museum Press, 1992.

    Krauss, Beatrice H.
    Plants in Hawaiian culture
    illustrations by Thelma F. Greig.
    Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, c1993.

Isabella Abbot is a professor emeritus at the University of
Hawai'i's botany department and is/was on the board of the Bishop
Museum. A Hawaiian and a famous expert on seaweeds.

Usually, breadfruit gum is cited, arrowroot or pia, candlenut oil or
kukui, Kamani oil, mucilage from ferns and so on. Joy was trying to
verify analytically some of the materials cited. As far as binders,
you are essentially dealing with the same groups of plants for
binders for paints. Understand that no distinction was made between
dyes and paints, both are simply colorants that serve specialized
purposes. Buck's series on the arts and crafts of Hawaii is also
useful and still available via the Bishop Museum Press but I think
Valerie would be a good person to contact

                  Conservation DistList Instance 18:43
                  Distributed: Monday, March 14, 2005
                       Message Id: cdl-18-43-004
Received on Wednesday, 9 March, 2005

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