Join Absolute Travel & Papua New Guinea Tourism for a spectacular event: Curious Birds You Never Knew Existed with Smithsonian’s Bruce Beehler. We will also be welcoming two cultural representatives from Papua New Guinea: Mundiya Kepanga, hailing from the Huli tribe and Fabian Paino, a Malagan master carver, to New York for their very first time as they display their bilas (traditional dress) & perform live carving demonstrations.
After the welcome reception, guests will enjoy an engaging presentation by Bruce Beehler from the National Museum of Natural History & Smithsonian Institution on birding and culture in Papua New Guinea.
BEER, WINE & HORS D’OEUVRES WILL BE SERVED
Thursday, June 12 | 3pm-5pm
508 West 26th Street, #4A, New York, NY 10001
Space limited; reservations recommended | RSVP to Jessica Weeman at email@example.com
ABOUT THE GUESTS
DR. BRUCE M. BEEHLER An internationally known ornithologist and leader of natural history expeditions, Dr. Bruce M. Beehler has studied birds-of-paradise for nearly 40 years. He has expanded knowledge of courtship behavior, foraging tactics and social systems. In 2005, he and his team were the first scientists to observe a male Bronze Parotid in the wild during an expedition deep in the Foja Mountains.
Beehler will present highlights of more than 50 field trips to the great island of New Guinea, where he studied its wonderful birds-of-paradise and other bizarre wildlife. In addition, the amazing cultural diversity of New Guinea’s indigenous people will be featured.
MUNDIYA KEPANGA Traditionally named Ukuma Mundiya Kepanga, Mundiya was born in the mid-1960s in the heart of the Highlands of Papua New Guinea in a small hut built especially for his birth in Anda Mini, a place located in Telabo. Belonging to the clan Telabo Angi Puria, he is part of the Huli tribe whose members are concentrated around the Tari area in the center of the province of Hela.
Leading a simple and traditional life, his main business has always been growing sweet potatoes and rearing pigs. As a teenager, he grew his hair for 18-months for a ritual wig custom for the initiation of young Huli. Funny and observant, he has a unique perspective on Western society as he has explored Europe in the past. This June will mark his first time in New York.
FABIAN PAINO Fabian is one of the most well known Malagan carvers in Papua New Guinea. Malagan culture is primarily known for the carving of wooden sculptures, the ceremonial art of New Ireland’s living culture. His work is now found amongst people’s collections from all over the world although Fabian hesitates to call himself a master carver. But for now, he is content to remain an artist with ambition to excel in his craft.
He hails from the Langenia Village, Konos located on the north coast of New Ireland. He is from the linguistic regions as living master carver Ben Sisia of Libba Village. The soft wood Fabian uses for carving is from the Saba tree which is quite abundant in Kavieng–not so abundant in New York!
We look forward to seeing you!
The Absolute Travel Team
Learn more about our private trips to Papua New Guinea here, and see images from Noel Gilbert’s trip there in her photo essay, “From New England to New Guinea: Noel Explores the Final Frontier.”