Retour en haut de page


Logo gris


Guest lecturers, specialists in various fields related to French Polynesia and mainly the Marquesas, will give a series of lectures, to offer a more rounded understanding of the history, culture, art and archaeology of the destination. Lectures are held in our two conference rooms.

lecturers Marquesas Islands
Logo gris




Benjamin TEIKITUTOUA called « PIRI » is 68 years old. He was born on a « MARAE » in the Valley of HAKATAO in UA POU, one of the Marquesas Islands. A retired school teacher for 13 years, he now devotes himself to the preservation of his people’s culture. He is in charge of the Cultural Association of Ua Pou and Vice-President of the Cultural Federation MOTU-HAKA of the Marquesas Islands which has revived this fascinating culture. He was also the Vice-President of the Committee that organised the Marquesan Art and Cultural Festival of Ua Pou in December 2019. 

Doctor of Anthropology SIDSEL MILLERSTROM

Dr. SIDSEL MILLERSTROM (PhD in anthropology)

Anthropologist, University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Millerstrom will focus her lectures on the origins of migrations from Polynesia and their settlements, particularly on the early settlements and life in the Marquesas Islands. Since 1984, she has travelled extensively through the Marquesas Islands. During this time she discovered and classified a significant number of Tikis including more than 7,000 ancient petroglyphs. Prehistoric architecture, the culture of objects, and tattooing will also be the subjects of her on-board lectures. Dr. MILLERSTROM’s research also appears in many academic journals in the United States.  

PhD in Applied Linguistics KEAO NeSMITH

Dr. KEAO NeSMITH (PhD in applied linguistics)

Born and raised on the island of Kaua’i in Hawaii, Dr. NeSmith has spent a lot of time on various islands in Polynesia studying Polynesian languages and cultures. He has taught the Hawaiian language, Hawaiian studies, and the revitalization of endangered languages at various universities, such as the University of Hawaii (most of his career), the University of French Polynesia, and the University of Waikato. He conducts research on Hawaiian and Polynesian cultures and languages, travels extensively in Polynesia and abroad for his research and continues to teach.

Doctor of Indigenous Education KU KAHAKALAU

Dr. KU KAHAKALAU (PhD in indigenous education)

Award-winning Hawaiian educator, singer-songwriter, storyteller, researcher and expert in Hawaiian language, history and culture. The first person in the world to earn a PhD in Indigenous Education, she has teaching degrees in Hawaiian and German, and a master’s degree in European languages and literature. An international consultant in indigenous education, she has travelled and worked extensively in Indian countries and Polynesia to revitalize indigenous languages. 

PhD in Anthropology EMILY DONALDSON

Dr. EMILY DONALDSON (PhD in anthropology) 

She first visited the Marquesas Islands in 2001 when she was an archaeology student. The following year, she returned to conduct her own anthropological research and, by the end of the summer, she was an adopted member (tafai) of a local family. She spent 10 years running an archaeological field school and conserving the community museum in Vaitahu. She is fluent in French and speaks Marquesan.

PhD in Anthropology KATHLEEN C. RILEY

Dr. KATHLEEN C. RILEY (PhD in anthropology)

Professor at Rutgers University. She has worked in the field in the Marquesas Islands, Vermont, France, Montreal and New York. Her research has focused on the relationship between linguistic ideologies and the socialization of language, linguistic change and culturally constructed social identities. Recently, she has examined how food and language are linked both materially and symbolically. 

PhD in Law and Humanities Contemporary History CORINNE RAYBAUD

Dr. CORINNE RAYBAUD (PhD in History & Law)

Corinne has a Ph.D in History and Law and has written around 20 books about Polynesia. She taught History/Geography in Tahiti from 1976 to 2000. Her latest research work focused on the first European explorers of the Pacific Ocean. She has given several lectures on Polynesian history and participated in two film productions for Arte, one about the mutiny on the Bounty and the other, on the Bougainville round-the-world tour. 

Doctor in Prehistoric Archaeology PIERRE OTTINO

Dr. PIERRE OTTINO (PhD in prehistoric archaeology)

He is a researcher at the Development Research Institute. He has spent more than 15 years researching the ruins of settlements in the Marquesas Islands.  His work has inspired the local population to rebuild traditional houses based on the memories of elders and his research. This in turn has revitalized traditional crafts such as woodcarving.


ROBERT & DENISE KOENING (Professor – Nurse)

Denise is originally from Basel, Switzerland; she worked at the hospital in Tahiti as a nurse specialized in Diabetes education. She is retired and remains Robert’s better half. He was a VAT 69, i.e. a Technical Aid Volunteer, and came to Tahiti in 1969 to teach philosophy at the Protestant College of Papeete and also at the Nursing School for many years. He was President of the Society of Oceanic Studies which is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. Denise and Robert founded a small publishing company, Haere Po ( which has, since 1981, published about 100 books on our islands, all printed in Tahiti itself.



Very involved in Polynesian life, she was a sub divisionary of the town planning department from 1981 to 2016, deputy mayor of Nuku Hiva from 2003 to 2014, President of the tourism committee from 1997 to 2003, secretary of the Cultural Association Te Hina o motu Haka from 1991 to 2017, Vice-President of the Association for the Environment of Nuku Hiva, Treasurer of the Association Centre de documentation des Marquises Paevii from 1993 to 2017, Secretary of the Hiking Association of Nuku Hiva Nuku Mai in Taha and finally President of the National Order of Merit of Polynesia elected in April 2017.

engineer and geophysicist GISLAIN HOUZET

GISLAIN HOUZET (engineer & geophysicist)

He worked for many years in Polynesia where he often resides. Fascinated by the history of the great maritime discoveries in the Pacific Ocean, Ghislain has written many articles on this subject; notably, he is the author of the book “Des nouvelles de monsieur de la Perouse”. In France, he is Vice-President of the Association of Friends of French Polynesia and Honorary General Secretary of the Centre for Studies on Easter Island and Polynesia. Within this framework, he leads numerous conferences in the Universities of the Third Age. The subjects of the conferences are: Historical Discovery of Polynesia and the Marquesas Islands, the mutiny of the Bounty, the shipwreck of the Matilda, the expedition LA PEROUSE, and the expedition of Entrecastaux.

Doctor in prehistory, ethnology and anthropology MARIE NOELLE OTTINO

Dr. MARIE NOELLE OTTINO (PhD in prehistory, ethnology and anthropology)

She has participated in archaeological research and restoration work, particularly in the Marquesas Islands of Ua Pou, Ua Huka, Nuku Hiva, Hiva Oa and Tahuata. Since the 1980s, she and her husband Pierre have been involved in the study of Polynesian heritage in the Marquesas Archipelago, which has extended to the discovery of the oldest sites in East Polynesia at Anapua, Ua Pou. It also led to the systematic study of valleys, such as the ceremonial complex of Tahakia-Kamuihei-Tei’ipoka and the religious site of I’ipona. She has contributed to numerous publications such as dictionaries and exhibition catalogues.

Doctor of Civilization JOSIANE TEAMOTUAITAU

JOSIANE TEAMOTUAITAU (PhD in civilization)

Josiane Teamotuaitau is Tahitian; her family comes from Ra’iatea, but she grew up in Tahiti. After high school, she left for France where she studied foreign languages. She spent 10 years there before coming back to Tahiti; she taught English at Tai’arapu Senior High School for 20 years and then decided to retire from National Education to have more time for her family and research. As she’s always been deeply interested in the history of her country, in 1994 she undertook research in ethnology and history. Now a PhD in Humanities she still teaches at the University of French Polynesia and writes on the history of Tahiti. In 2016, her book dedicated to the history of Tahiti and entitled Fa’ati’a mai ia Tai’arapu, Grandeur et déclin des Teva i tai’ was published. She is the current Vice-President of the Société des Études Océaniennes (Oceania Studies Society) that celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2017, and is also involved in various cultural projects such as traditional sailing as President of Fa’afaite, Tahiti Voyaging Society.

Doctor of Anthropology GERALDINE LE ROUX

GERALDINE LE ROUX (PhD in anthropology)

Co-director of the Department of Ethnology at the Université de Bretagne Occidentale (Brest, France) and Associate Researcher at James Cook University (Townsville, Australia), Géraldine Le Roux devoted her thesis in art history and anthropology to the production and international circulation of contemporary Oceanic arts. As an exhibition curator, she has contributed to the dissemination of Pacific artists in Europe. Her lectures fall within the scope of her research – museographic approaches, heritage processes, the ethics of the Aboriginal art market, Oceanian festivals, and indigenous identity claims. For the past few years, she has also been working on marine pollution and the artistic recycling of sealeaves, the subject of her next book.

inventor and historian MAURICE BLIGH

MAURICE BLIGH (inventor and historian)

Maurice travelled aboard the Aranui where he recounted the travels of his great-great-great-great-grandfather, Vice-Admiral William Bligh of the historically renowned HMS Bounty. For more than 45 years, Maurice Bligh has been researching his legendary ancestor and working to dispel the misinformation and inaccurate portrayal of William Bligh found in several novels and two films about the Bounty mutiny. Maurice reveals that William Bligh, known as “Captain Bligh”, was a man who had been a member of the Bounty family for many years. He was a British national hero who was an integral part of the navigation of the Pacific Ocean and the exploration of Tahiti. On board the Aranui 5, Maurice Bligh gave four illustrated lectures entitled “Secrets of the Bounty” where passengers had the opportunity to discover William Bligh’s naval career, which continued long after the mutiny on the Bounty, as well as other British expeditions of the 1700s. Maurice also share the personal experiences of his visits to the region, including his 1970 voyage which followed closely the route of the Bounty and covered 36,000 nautical miles.


heritage, conservation and art professional VICTORIA ANDREWS

VICTORIA ANDREWS (heritage, conservation & art professional)

She was Deputy Director of the Museum of Fine Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA, before moving to New Zealand in 1995.  She has maintained her museum associations while working to preserve Maori and European cultural heritage.  She has travelled extensively in the Pacific in search of the material culture of different island groups.  With her extensive experience and knowledge of the Polynesian and European history of New Zealand, the Marquesas Islands, Samoa and Niue, Ms. Andrews will explore early voyages of discovery in the Pacific and the links and associations between island cultures.  Discussions will include recent voyages in double-hulled canoes.  Traditional Marquesan art, crafts and tattooing will be featured alongside artists and writers such as Paul Gauguin, Jacques Brel and Herman Melville.  The revival of Marquesan culture and tradition will be discussed as well as the romantic appeal of French Polynesia.

doctor of anthropology TERRY HUNT

Dr. TERRY HUNT (PhD in anthropology)

Dean of Clark Honors College and Professor of Anthropology at the University of Oregon, Dr. Hunt is an archaeologist whose research and teaching focuses on historical environmental change and life on islands in the Pacific Ocean. He has been conducting archaeological research in the Pacific Islands for more than 30 years. Dr. Hunt has published numerous scientific articles on the archaeology, prehistory and linguistics of the Pacific. In 2008, Dr. Hunt received the prestigious Medal for Research Excellence from the Council of Regents at the University of Hawaii in recognition of his ground-breaking work on Rapa Nui. In 2005, Dr. Hunt received the University of Hawaii Regents Medal for Excellence in Teaching. Dr. Hunt’s research was featured in a cover story in National Geographic Magazine (July 2012) and in a full-length television documentary in Nova-National Geographic broadcast in November 2012.

tattoo artist TEIKI HUUKENA

TEIKI HUUKENA (tattoo artist)

Tiki tattoo artist and author of the 1st Dictionary of Symbols and Meanings of Polynesian Tattooing of the Marquesas Islands. Teiki is the preeminent authority in the Polynesian tattoo world today. He works on Marquesan tattooing in his practice and in the study of the meaning of the symbols of the ancestral tattoos of “Patutiki” with his family and friends, Marie-Noelle and Pierre Ottino who are archaeologists, researchers and specialists on the Marquesas Islands. Teiki will explain the differences between the various styles of Polynesian Tattoos – Te Tatau Tahiti, Tamoko Maori, Marquesas Patutiki, Ta Tatau Samoa. The Patutiki (Marquesan tattoo) is the richest in ancient traditional symbols and the most complex of all Polynesian tattoos. 


TAHIARII PARIENTE (independent researcher, sailor, navigator & international lecturer)

Born in Tahiti, Tahiarii’s life was influenced by his childhood between Europe and Polynesia. In 2003, Tahiarii returned to the Raromatai Islands to be close to his people and settled in Bora Bora, dividing his time between his IT activity and his cultural responsibilities. Tahiarii follows the ancient Arioi tradition by practicing and interpreting Polynesian arts, teaching the younger generations to reconnect the ancient with the contemporary. He has participated in the organization of cultural events such as the internationally renowned “Festival of Tattoonesia”. In 2007, he moved to Hawaii to pursue his research on his indigenous heritage and was accepted as a student of the highly recognized sailors such as Nainoa Thompson and Onohi Paishon. In 2009, he sailed the Te Matau a Maui canoe in the historic Tavaru Fleet expedition from New Zealand to Rarotonga via Tahiti, using non-instrumental guidance. He was a lecturer in Polynesian culture aboard the Robert C. Seamans, an American research vessel, in 2012 from Tahiti to Hawaii.

Professor of Ethnomusicology JANE FREEMAN MOULIN

Dr. JANE FREEMAN MOULIN (professor of ethnomusicology)

Jane is the author of over 50 articles and books on the performing arts in French Polynesia, including The Dance of Tahiti, Music in the Southern Marquesas Islands, and Music in Pacific Island Cultures: Experiencing Music, Expressing Culture. As lead researcher for the UNESCO project on the territorial study of Oceanic music in the Marquesas Islands, she has recorded and documented more than 740 songs and received a special mention from the Marquesas cultural organization Motu Haka. Her award-winning international thesis, based on UNESCO fieldwork, focused on music, dance and oral poetry from the Marquesas Islands. A former resident of Tahiti and dancer in the best professional groups in Tahiti (Te Maeva and Tahiti Nui), she participated for five years in the Heiva de Tahiti competition and is passionate about both the study and practice of Pacific music and dance. She will share with our guests aboard Aranui information on the historical characteristics of music as well as the wonderful contemporary expressions of culture that make the art of French Polynesia so vital and exciting.

Doctor of Political Science AL WARDI SEMIR

Dr. AL WARDI SEMIR (PhD Polital Sciences)

Doctor of Political Science, Head of the Department of Law, Economics and Management and Lecturer in Political Science at the University of French Polynesia
– Member of the Laboratory of Insular Governance and Development, GDI (EA 4240).
– Member of the Committee of the Pacific Island Political Science Association (PIPSA), Auckland, NZ.
– Member of the Asia-Imasia Network of the CNRS
– Member of the French Association of Political Science.

Doctor of Art History CAROL IVORY

Dr. CAROL IVORY (PhD, University of Washington)

Carol Ivory is an art historian (PhD, University of Washington); she retired from Washington State University in 2014, where she served as Professor of Fine Arts, Chair of the Department of Fine Arts, and Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Dr. Ivory’s research focuses on the art, history, and culture of the Marquesas Islands. She has worked with cultural leaders and artists in the Marquesas for more than 25 years. In addition to publishing dozens of journal articles and catalogue essays, she has co-curated or consulted on numerous exhibitions on the Marquesas and French Polynesia including The Marquesas: Two Centuries of Cultural Traditions at the Mission Houses Museum, Honolulu (2003), Adorning the World: Art of the Marquesas Islands at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2005), and Gauguin Polynesia: an Elusive Paradise, at the Ny Carlsburg Glyptotek, Copenhagen and the Seattle Art Museum (2011-2012). Most recently, she curated the exhibition and edited the catalogue for Matahoata: Art et Société aux Iles Marquises at the Musée du quai Branly, Paris (2016). Dr. Ivory continues her research, publishing recently on the lives of several high-ranking 19th century Nuku Hiva women. Her presentations will focus on Marquesan prehistory, history and culture, changes in the Marquesas after European contact, including the reinvigoration of Marquesan culture since the 1970s, and tattoo in Polynesia, especially in the Marquesas.