Moai Culture Profiles

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The Easter Island exhibitions have involved the work of a team of 17:

Ian Conrich

Ian Conrich is Associate Professor in the School of Communication, International Studies and Languages, at the University of South Australia, where he has also held the position Associate Head of School: Research. Previously he was a Fellow at the University of Essex, Professor of Film and Visual Culture at the University of Derby, and the founding Director of the Centre for New Zealand Studies, Birkbeck, University of London. He was the 2005 MacGeorge Visiting Scholar at the University of Melbourne, and 2005-6 was a Visiting Scholar at Oxford University in the Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology. In 2008 he was named Air New Zealand New Zealander of the Year. He has been a Guest Editor of Post Script, Asian Cinema, the Harvard Review, and Studies in Travel Writing. The author of New Zealand Film - A Guide (2008, in Polish), Studies in New Zealand Cinema (2009), Easter Island, Myths and Popular Culture (2011), and co-author of the forthcoming Sri Lankan Cinema: South Asian Film in Texts and Contexts and Gothic Dissections in Film and Literature: The Body in Parts, he is an editor or co-author of a further twelve books, including New Zealand - A Pastoral Paradise? (2000), The Cinema of John Carpenter: The Technique of Terror (2005), Film's Musical Moments (2006), New Zealand Filmmakers (2007), Contemporary New Zealand Cinema (2008), The Cinema of New Zealand (in Polish, 2009), Horror Zone: The Cultural Experience of Contemporary Horror Cinema (2009), New Zealand, France and the Pacific (2011), and Easter Island: Cultural and Historical Perspectives (2012). He has contributed to more than 50 books and journals and his work has been translated into French, Danish, Norwegian, Polish, Hungarian, and Hebrew.


Martyn Harris

Martyn Harris graduated from the School of African and Asian Studies (SOAS), University of London, with a degree in Japanese and Linguistics, and a dissertation covering the Hopi tense and aspect system. He then moved to Birkbeck, University of London, to do a MRes in Applied Linguistics, exploring linguistic and statistical methods for the decipherment of rongorongo. He is now a PhD student in Computer Science and Information Systems, at Birkbeck, focusing on data-mining and machine learning methods for exploring text corpora including the Aramaic magic bowls from late antiquity.

Roy Smith

Dr Roy Smith is Principal Lecturer in International Relations, School of Arts and Humanities, Nottingham Trent University. He has a particular research interest in small island states and has conducted fieldwork and written on islands ranging from Unst in the Shetland Islands to Palau and the Marshall Islands in the Pacific. He is a former visiting research fellow at the Australian National University, the Pacific Islands editor for the Sage publication Journal of Developing Societies, and an area representative for the Pacific Islands Society of the United Kingdom and Ireland. He is the author of The Nuclear-Free and Independent Pacific Movement: After Moruroa (1997), co-author of Diseases of Globalization: Socioeconomic Transition and Health (2001), and co-author of International Political Economy in the 21st Century: Contemporary Issues and Analyses (2010). He has also published in Journal of New Zealand and Pacific Studies, Global Environmental Politics, Security Dialogue, International Journal of Ethics, Central European Journal of International and Security Studies, and International Journal of Climate Change.

Jennifer Wagner

Jennifer Wagner earned her PhD in Applied Linguistics in the Research Centre for Languages & Cultures at the University of South Australia. Her PhD project was an analysis of vocabulary and culture in university textbooks of French, with a focus on stylistic and geographic lexical variation. Jennifer taught French and Linguistics at the University of South Australia as well as English as a Second Language at Oakland University in the United States and Université Savoie Mont Blanc in France. She has published two books for learners of French and she has been the webmaster of, a free language learning website, for over a decade. She is also an assistant editor of the Journal of New Zealand and Pacific Studies and an assistant organiser for the annual conferences of the New Zealand Studies Association.

Adam Crowther

Adam Crowther graduated from the University of Derby with a First Class honours degree in Film Studies. Adam was also the President of the University's film society, and was the Secretary for the previous year. Through the society, Adam has organised various events with the University, local professionals, and national media centres and is currently working with Derby's local arts centre QUAD. In addition, Adam has a strong interest in practical filmmaking and has worked on numerous independent productions in a variety of roles both big and small. He has recently completed the edit of a documentary about the now defunct Friars club in Aylesbury, which was once home to acts such as David Bowie and The Clash.

Hermann Mückler

Hermann Mückler is Professor of Cultural and Social Anthropology and Ethnohistory at the University of Vienna. His regional focuses for research are the Pacific Islands and he specialises in peace and conflict studies, colonialism and postcolonialism, geopolitics, history, visual anthropology and material culture. He has written and (co)edited twenty-four books and published over two hundred articles and reviews, most of them written in the German language. His recent publications include a four-volume edition in German about the cultural history of the Pacific Islands (2009–2013), an edited book on Walter Knoche: Die chilenische Osterinsel-Expedition von 1911 (2015), and a book co-edited with Ian Conrich: Rapa Nui – Easter Island: Cultural and Historical Perspectives (2016). He is president of the Anthropological Society of Vienna and the Austria-Fiji-Society, and vice-president of the Institute for Comparative Research in Architecture.

Laura Sedgwick

Laura Sedgwick is the Book Reviews Editor for the Journal of New Zealand and Pacific Studies, and Assistant Organiser for the annual conferences of the New Zealand Studies Association. She holds an MA in Cinema Studies and a BA (Hons) in History of Modern Art, Design and Film, and is working on a PhD in Film Studies, examining the representation of haunted spaces in contemporary horror.

Teresa Jambur

Teresa comes from Poland; she previously lived in Spain and presently she is based in the UK. She has a BA in International Relations from A.F. Modrzewski Krakow University and a MA in Latin American Studies from Jagiellonian University in Krakow. She has researched on Spanish language and Iberian and Latin American cultures. She was involved in the organisation of a variety of events promoting Latin American culture and young artists in Krakow, Poland. The projects included photographic exhibitions, talks, meetings with travellers and artists, and a cycle of film shows. Recently, she has been drawn to Easter Island, as part of her work on Spanish speaking communities associated with Latin America.

Lauren Jenkins

Lauren was based at the University of Derby, where she studied for a joint honours in Popular Culture & Media and Film & Television Studies. She has a strong interest in film and popular culture and runs a film blog called Significant Cinema. Lauren enjoys travelling and hopes to visit Rapa Nui one day.

Peter Munford

Peter Munford graduated with First Class honours in Film Studies from the University of Derby. He is a member of the cinema team at QUAD, Derby's centre for art and film. Whilst there, he has helped to run iD Fest, a film festival exploring the concept of identity in cinema. He has also curated for the QUAD a monthly film night focusing upon the cinema of East Asia.

Patricia Porumbel

Patricia Porumbel graduated with a First class honours degree in Film and Television Studies from the University of Derby. She has been an Assistant Editor for the Journal of New Zealand and Pacific Studies and Assistant Organiser for the annual conferences of the New Zealand Studies Association.

Bree Tinsley

Bree Tinsley is a PhD candidate at the University of South Australia. She has an Honours degree in Children's Literature and her research interests include popular culture, celebrity, feminist studies and Young Adult literature. Bree loves travelling and is fascinated by myths and legends.

Catherine Welsh

Catherine has a degree in Graphic Design from the Campbelltown Campus TAFE NSW, Australia. She also graduated from Metroscreen Paddington New South Wales studying Film. Her Interests include filmmaking and photography. She has a fascination with the moai, other ancient monolithic sculptures such as the Olmec heads and Ancient History.

Dan Bendrups

Dr Dan Bendrups is Senior Lecturer in Ethnomusicology at the Queensland Conservatorium, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia. He has made significant contributions to the field of Pacific ethnomusicology, especially with regard to his work on Rapanui (Easter Island) music (the subject of his PhD), and he is currently Chair of the Regional Committee for the International Council of Traditional Music. He is credited with creating a digital music repository of archival recordings on Rapanui, and is a strong advocate of action research initiatives that lead to tangible reciprocal outcomes for research participants. To this end, he has produced commercially oriented sound recordings, and assisted in obtaining research funding for musicians and culture bearers with whom he has worked.

Frieder Wahl

Frieder was born in Chile and grew up in Germany. In 2004, he decided to take a break within his academic career and to move to Rapa Nui, where he has since been acting as a guide for visitors from all around the world.