Hiapo is the Niuean art form of Bark cloth painting that was rarely practiced over the last 100 years. It has recently been brought back into the Niuean community through artist Cora-Allan Wickliffe who is the granddaughter of Vakaafi and Fotia Lafaiki, they were both born in the village of Liku and raised in Alofi. Cora-Allan and her late grandmother Fotia created a Hiapo patterns and motifs book in 2020 during COVID lockdown as a project to keep themselves connected during a hard time, this book was supported by a CNZ grant.
Cora-Allan began her journey being inspired by her grandparents who have been a big part of her life, learning how to cook and about traditional art practices was a big part of spending time with her Niuean side. Since pursuing the art of Hiapo, Cora-Allan has visited the Pacific islands repeatedly to continue making, sharing and she is working her way towards creating a document to assist Hiapo makers in the future.
Visiting the island regularly, Cora-Allan has recently taken her sister and cousin back to Niue in hopes of them learning the art form of Hiapo as well. Attending community events where she can is important to her practice as she continues to plant her work in the community.