This is a past event from the 2022 festival See the current programme


Pukapuka Talks

NUKU Live is part of a creative and social impact storytelling movement that amplifies the voices of kickass Indigenous wāhine. Meet the book’s creator Qiane Matata-Sipu and two of the wāhine featured in the pukapuka: Dr Acushla Dee Sciascia and Puawai Cairns

The word NUKU is derived from the atua Papatūānuku and represents the ultimate feminine essence. This women’s wānanga is about connection and collaboration, a celebration of culture, storytelling, identity and female power.

From Oscar-nominated filmmakers and award-winning musicians, to scientists, entrepreneurs, tribal leaders, artists, environmental champions, knowledge holders, mothers and more, these NUKU wāhine seek to influence the world around them. The youngest is 14 and the eldest is in her mid-70s. They are wāhine Māori, Moriori, Pasifika, Melanesian, Wijadjuri, Himalayan and Mexican.

The stunning pukapuka that celebrates their stories was shortlisted for the 2022 Ockham NZ Book Award for Illustrated Nonfiction.

In this session, Qiane Matata-Sipu (Te Waiohua ki Te Ahiwaru me Te Ākitai, Waikato, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Pikiao, Cook Islands) – who recorded the stories, photographed the wāhine and self-published NUKU – facilitates a kōrero with two of the wāhine featured in the pukapuka.


Update: Please note that unfortunately, Rachel Taulelei is no longer able to join this kōrero.


Buy the pukapuka here:

NUKU: Stories of 100 Indigenous Women

A selection of the beautiful portraits will be exhibited throughout the Festival in the g-block Atrium at NMIT - NUKU: The Exhibition.

With thanks to Qiane+co.


Qiane Matata-Sipu (Chair) 

Qiane Matata-Sipu (Te Waiohua ki Te Ahiwaru me Te Ākitai, Waikato, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Pikiao, Cook Islands) is an award-winning journalist, photographer, visual artist and entrepreneur, working across these industries for over 16 years. The 2021 Arts and Culture Woman of Influence is the founder and creator of NUKU, a social enterprise that celebrates Indigenous wāhine. Using a creative, storytelling platform, NUKU amplifies Indigenous female change-makers, system shakers and leaders through audio podcasts, photography, videography, art and live events. NUKU invites wāhine to look at the world through a different cultural lens: one made by and for Indigenous women, mā hine mō hine kia hine. NUKU uses the arts to enhance self-confidence and reduce the impacts of racism, discrimination and social exclusion. At the end of 2021, Qiane self-published the acclaimed book NUKU: Stories of 100 Indigenous Women, which was shortlisted for the prestigious Ockham New Zealand book awards.  This year Qiane has returned to Kura studying rumaki reo (total immersion te reo Māori) at Te Wananga Takiura.


Dr Acushla Dee Sciascia 

Dr Acushla Dee Sciascia (Ngāruahine Rangi, Ngāti Ruanui, Te Ātiawa) is a business woman representing Indigenous perspectives and narratives in research, evaluation and strategy development. Her studies found her researching digital tangihanga long before Covid-19 had arrived, exploring how tikanga in te ao Māori is changing with modern times.


Puawai Cairns 

Puawai Cairns (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi Te Rangi and Ngāti Pūkenga) has held several roles across her time at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, including as curator. She is currently Te Papa’s Director of Audience and Insight.


Sun 23 Oct | 3.00pm

90 min
Pay What You Can (PWYC)

Plus service fee 

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