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Tiki Central Forums General Tiki Oceanic Art - Books (going to the source)
Oceanic Art - Books (going to the source)
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 06, 2002
Posts: 111
Posted: 2002-09-20 10:39 am   Permalink

I'm sitting here with the Fairfax County libray copy of Nicholas Thomas' "Oceanic Art," taking the time to consider the source of all this Tiki devotion.

Often I have considered purchasing a more comprehensive overview of the oceanic arts and was looking at the Amazon offerings.

Does anyone have any opinions on books that offer the best visuals (I'm not ready to read any art history criticism) of Oceanic or Polynesian art?

Amazon offers the Thomas book (very small and not very colorful). They also have books by Anthony J. P. Meyer and Adrienne L. Kaeppler. But these are big (i.e., expensive books) and I thought I would troll for opinions first.


the amazon listings are:




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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 14, 2002
Posts: 1290
From: Bangkok
Posted: 2002-09-20 7:14 pm   Permalink

I have a copy of the weighty Anthony JP Meyer book and its very informative lots of good pictures, but a bit biased towards melanesia, good bit on polynesia but only a tiny bit on micronesia.
I found my copy in a bargin discount bookstore for a tenner so it might be worth checking out any of your local stores before forking out a fortune to amazon

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2002
Posts: 2026
From: Aku Hall, Chicago
Posted: 2002-09-23 12:06 am   Permalink

My fave books on Oceanic Art:

Arts of the South Seas: The Collections of the Musee Berbier-Mueller, edited by Dougless Newton (Prestel, 1999, $75).

Oceanic Art, Herbert Tischner, (Pantheon Books, 1954)

Hawaiian Sculpture, J. Halley Cox / William Devenport (U of Hawaii Press, 1974, 1988).

The Art of Easter Island (by Thor Heyerdahl... this thing is like 1200 pages and really rare!) Published in the '70's.

The Book of Tiki! (Taschen)



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Trader Woody
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2301
From: Tiki Manor, Forest of Bowland,UK
Posted: 2002-09-24 01:37 am   Permalink

Tiki Chris & I also scored the Anthony J P Meyer book cheaply over here in the UK, where it crops up in discount book shops regularly. I think the publishers went the Taschen route of printing large numbers of tri-lingual books and then flooded the bookshops of Europe with them. This is great for the consumer as you end up getting books of incredible quality for very little $$$.

The Meyer book is wonderful, though it could do with extended chapters on the more Tiki islands. Perhaps BigBro could bring a few cheap copies back from Hamburg! (Just kidding....I had trouble just carrying it home. The sucker is huge, even in the single volume edition).

A good little book is 'Oceanic Arts' published by Thames & Hudson. Lot's of pictures/photos, and not very expensive.

Finally, try out old National Geographics. You can pick 'em up for a pittance (people hate actually throwing them away), and Hawaii/Polynesia crops up with stunning regularity. Maybe that's where they send their correspondents when they've been good.

Trader Woody

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 2244
From: seattle, wa
Posted: 2002-09-24 02:23 am   Permalink

hey, if you order books from amazon.com ~ be sure to go thru Hanford's site.. so he gets the the Associates' cut..


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 13, 2007
Posts: 2105
From: Atlantis/Basque Country/Spain/Mexico
Posted: 2009-03-19 01:06 am   Permalink

Oceania by Jean Guiart

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Bay Park Buzzy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 07, 2006
Posts: 3043
From: West Bay Park, San Diego, CA
Posted: 2009-03-19 10:38 am   Permalink


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 04, 2008
Posts: 108
From: USA
Posted: 2009-03-20 05:26 am   Permalink

ok, i don't want to start a bank run on JP Meyer's book, but Konemann Verlag, the publisher went bankrupt. the new york subsidiary was functioning for a while to clear out old stocks of the english editions. all operations have now ceased. Ulmann bought some of the catalog, unsure if these include the JP Meyer title.

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