Easter Island Statue Project Official Website
Field Dispatches

Dispatches from EISP team members during the field season

Field Dispatches: November 2007

Dear EISP colleagues and site visitors,
Iaorana korua! Welcome to EISP’s dispatches, jottings, and journal entries, sent to you by our 2007 field team on Rapa Nui. Our records and reminders are of work done, people encountered, questions posed, and ideas explored. We are happy to share with you our adventures on Rapa Nui!
—Jo Anne Van Tilburg and the EISP 2007 Field Team

8 November 2007

We departed LAX at 1 p.m. November 2. Twenty-one plus hours and two stops later we landed on Rapa Nui under a brilliant blue colored sky sprinkled with fat puffy white clouds. The land which greeted us displayed brilliantly colored tropical plants: the familiar bougainvillea , fiery-flowered coral trees unlike the naked branches we now see at home, startling white lilies and a white-petaled daisy-like flower. Sunday we worked setting up the office at the site of the about-to-be-finished Mana Gallery which will serve as a showplace for the work of local artists. Then Alice took Jaine and me on a tour of downtown Hanga Roa, our new hometown. Monday morning we continued our walking tour as we visited the local cemetery, replete with flowers, both plastic and homegrown.
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Posted on May 4th, 2009 by EISP Staff | Categories: 2000s, Field Dispatches |

Field Dispatches: July 2004

Jo Anne Van Tilburg and Matthew Bates discuss which points to take during the Rano Raraku Interior Quarry survey..

Jo Anne Van Tilburg and Matthew Bates discuss which points to take during the Rano Raraku Interior Quarry survey.

Final Mapping Season

Dear EISP colleagues and site visitors,
Iaorana korua! Welcome to EISP’s dispatches, jottings, and journal entries, sent to you by our 2004 field team on Rapa Nui. Our records and reminders are of work done, people encountered, questions posed, and ideas explored. We are happy to share with you our adventures on Rapa Nui!
—Jo Anne Van Tilburg and the EISP 2004 Field Team

12 July 2004: Preparing for Departure!

Hello! It’s the day before the big trip. I’ve been gathering up the necessary field materials and will leave the Archive at UCLA soon (I hope). We’ll be updating this page with new photos as soon as we get situated on Rapa Nui. Glad to have you along for the ride!
—Alice, Los Angeles =)

I’m happy to have all my team back on the island! It’s very exciting to think we will be able to finish the final mapping of the interior quarry. It has been very nice weather in this season (winter) and I miss Bill’s good coffee!
—Cristian, Rapa Nui

14 July 2004: Flying!

View from the flight to Rapa Nui, somewhere over the Pacific. © EISP 2004.

View from the flight to Rapa Nui, somewhere over the Pacific. © EISP 2004.

As we wing our way toward Rapa Nui, I am thinking of the work ahead. This is our final mapping season in Rano Raraku interior quarry!! We began our first and second field seasons with Peter Boniface of Cal Poly Pomona on our team, and on this trip one of his students, Matthew Bates, is carrying on that work, joining our team as surveyor. He will complete an important and challenging series of mapping tasks in both Sections C and D, and the statue survey points he collects will be augmented, as in past seasons, by digital and metric data.
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Posted on May 4th, 2009 by EISP Staff | Categories: 2000s, Field Dispatches |

Field Dispatches 2002-2003: Three New Moai Discovered!

EISP, the Rapa Nui Community, and Island Agencies Cooperate to Preserve the Archaeological Record.

October-November 2002

Front view of red scoria <em>moai</em> standing in Nely Pakarati Manutomatoma’s garden. Photo by Alice Hom. © 2002 EISP.

Front view of red scoria moai standing in Nely Pakarati Manutomatoma’s garden. Photo by Alice Hom. © 2002 EISP.

Left view of red scoria <em>moai</em> standing in Nely Pakarati Manutomatoma’s garden. Photo by Alice Hom. © 2002 EISP.

Left view of red scoria moai standing in Nely Pakarati Manutomatoma’s garden. Photo by Alice Hom. © 2002 EISP.



Returning to Hanga Roa from fieldwork in Rano Raraku, we followed the same route every day for a month. Nearing the village, we always turned to run parallel with the airport runway. My eyes grew accustomed to the same daily blur of greenery along the opposite side of the road, and details were registered only in passing. Then one day I suddenly realized that an awkward shape standing in Nely Pakarati Manutomatoma’s neatly trimmed garden was oddly familiar. Cristián turned the truck around and we drove into her driveway where, standing propped against the house, we were stunned to recognize a large, broken, and only roughly carved red scoria moai! Nely told us that she and her family had recently found the statue, buried face up, when they had laid a foundation and concrete floor for a new terrace. She was very fond of her statue and thrilled when we carefully documented it for the EISP database. It joins the very small number of important and, in many ways, enigmatic red scoria statues we have recorded to date. [Read More...]

Posted on May 4th, 2009 by Jo Anne Van Tilburg, Ph.D. | Categories: 2000s, Field Dispatches |

Field Dispatches: July 2003

Jo Anne Van Tilburg Director of EISP (UCLA)

Jo Anne Van Tilburg, Director of EISP (UCLA)

Rano Raraku Interior Mapping Project Phase Six

Dear EISP colleagues and site visitors,
Iaorana korua! Welcome to EISP’s dispatches, jottings, and journal entries, sent to you by our 2003 field team on Rapa Nui. Notes, footnotes, and field notes…our records and reminders of work done, people encountered, questions posed, and ideas explored. We are happy to share with you our adventures on Rapa Nui.
—Jo Anne Van Tilburg and the EISP 2003 Field Team

8 July 2003: Departure from LAX

Always eager to depart for Rapa Nui, I am always reluctant to leave home and family. This is, by my imprecise count, at least the twentieth journey I have made to the island since my first in 1981. Even though I’m only one of many “northern shadows flitting across a southern landscape,” I still fancy myself an explorer. I love the adventure of each new field season and its promise of discovery!

Susana Nahoe Arellano, Licenciada in Anthropology (Universidad de Chile)

Susana Nahoe Arellano, Licenciada in Anthropology (Universidad de Chile)

Cristián Arévalo Pakarati, Rapa Nui Artist & EISP Co-investigator

Cristián Arévalo Pakarati, Rapa Nui Artist & EISP Co-investigator

Bill White, Alana Perlin and I are the first to depart LAX, and Peter Boniface will follow. EISP co-investigator Cristián Arévalo Pakarati will, as always, join us on our arrival on Rapa Nui. So, too, will Susana Nahoe Arellano, a new member of our team. Susana is a Licenciada in Anthropology (Universidad de Chile) with experience in Rapa Nui archaeology.



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Posted on May 4th, 2009 by EISP Staff | Categories: 2000s, Field Dispatches |