Every four years since 1972, the Pacific’s finest dancers, artisans, and cultural practitioners gather to celebrate Oceanic arts and culture. The Festival of Pacific Arts is an amazing two-week gathering of the best of the Pacific.
A new book on the Festival captures the color, excitement, and energy that characterize an event that’s been called the Olympics of Pacific culture. Pasefika: The Festival of Pacific Arts is by veteran regional journalist Floyd K. Takeuchi. It includes his 88 photographs and an essay focusing on the 10th Festival of Pacific Arts, which was held in American Samoa in 2008.
Pasefika includes photographs of performers from 23 of the nations and territories that took part in the 10th Festival. They range from Papua New Guinea and host American Samoa, to Tonga, Tokelau, Niue, Kiribati, New Caledonia, Solomon Islands, Samoa, Palau, Guam, and Tahiti. The photographs include stage performances, behind-the-scenes shots of participants, portraits, fashion shows, and a dramatic Samoan fire knife dance competition.
“I wanted Pasefika to give a reader the sense of being at the Festival, up close and personal with the wonderfully talented performers. I roamed the various festival venues, spent time with performers as they prepared to go on stage, and followed groups as they spent time in the American Samoan community,” says Takeuchi. “The book presents an intimate view of some of the best dancers and performers in Oceania.”
Pasefika: The Festival of Pacific Arts is available exclusively at online retailer Amazon.com. The 168-page soft cover book costs $36.99.
Takeuchi is a journalist with 34 years of experience, most of it in the Pacific. He is also the author of School On The Hill, a photo book about Xavier High School in the Federated States of Micronesia, and co-author of Majuro – Essays from an Atoll. For more information, visit www.floydtakeuchi.com.