Tayenebe

Description
Made by the late Lennah Newson. Basket-making predates European contact in Tasmania. This revived tradition encourages people to connect with their cultural heritage. This item was gifted to RAMM by Lennah in exchange for the Truganini shell jewellery that was returned to Tasmania in 1997.

This particular basket is made from the water reed Schoenoplectus pungens

H.105 mm
Accession Loan No.
814/1997/1
Simple Name
basket
Full Name
basket (tayenebe)
Common Name
tayenebe
Production Person Surname
Newson
Production Person Initials
Lennah
Production Country
Australia
Material
water reed (Schoenoplectus pungens)
Collection Class
Containers
Collection Contintent
Pacific
Production Town
Hobart
Production County
Tasmania
Production Area Region
Australia and New Zealand
Production Continent
Oceania
Production Year High
1997
Function Detail
Basket-making predates European contact in Tasmania. This revived tradition encourages people to connect with their cultural heritage. Knowledge of ancestral skills helps people maintain an Aboriginal identity that was almost lost in the 19th century. Made by the late Lennah Newson
Created At
2016-10-13 15:46:08
Updated At
2019-05-29 17:27:05

    There are 10 comments

    • Alan, Exwick History Group, local historian
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      Now their significance is working for me.

    • Gill Moore
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      The significance is the ritual of giving called Tayenebe. The aboriginal women lost the skill of making baskets. Truganini was one of the last true blood aboriginals. The things she made are very important to Tasmanian aboriginals. These baskets are made by Tasmanian aboriginal women who were rediscovering their culture.

    • (Anil Lee, moved to Exeter from Istanbul in 1988, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      Maybe these are representative of the real baskets they use. Aboriginals use baskets to catch fish.

    • (Yvonne Hicken, RAMM volunteer, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      If they were travelling people, perhaps it would be important to carry things and a basket would be precious as they would have had to stop to make it.

    • Anne-Flore Laloë, historical geographer and French interpreter
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      They gave it as a present, so it must mean something to them, but what?

    • (Caroline, potter, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      I’d like to try and make one myself. It’s good they got their things back. They are symbolic – I mean, they don’t really need to work.

    • (Alan, local historian in Exwick History Group, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      A craftsperson could probably appreciate them but my ignorance prevents me…. Just because something is made by an ancient culture we assume it’s ‘primitive’. I have a copy of the cave painting “Head of a bull” from Lascaux [in France]. The original was made thousands of years ago, but it’s wonderful and the people who made it were probably no different from us. I have a great respect for our ancestors.

    • (Margaret Hammond, painter, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      It looks as if it’s modelled on a bird’s nest…

    • (Anne-Flore Laloe, historical geographer and French interpreter, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      What use is it, rather than to just look on an object as purely decorative, symbolic shapes?

    • (Alan, local historian in Exwick History Group, in a Moving Here session organised by RAMM Exeter)
      22nd March 2017 | Permalink | Reply to this comment

      Baskets are my least favourite, because they’re not visually appealing, but now I know the story, it’s interesting [and]… their significance is working for me…. The longer I look at it, the more I like it.

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