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Samoan Siapo Lua


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Throughout Samoan history, siapo (tapa) has maintained its major role as an item of exchange and formal presentation. Special occasions such as births, funerals, weddings and investiture of matai titles call for the presentations of siapo.

Siapo is made from the bark of the mulberry tree. The bark is stripped off and pounded until it forms into a paper like cloth. Arrowroot paste is used to glue individual strips together to form a piece large enough for their intended purpose. Designs are created by placing the cloth over a carved wooden block called an upeti and rubbing clay dyes over to make the motifs.

Select from a growing selection of designs. Square pieces are approximately 30" high x 13" wide. Each piece is unique from variations in the tapa and dyes. Each is hand painted. Suitable for framing.