Las principales formas y expresiones en las que se manifiesta el arte indígena en la actualidad son la textilería, la cerámica, cestería y orfebrería.

Los conocimientos ancestrales sobre su realización son traspasados de generación en generación, estando además directamente asociados a actividades económicas desempeñadas por cada uno de los integrantes del grupo familiar, es así como, por ejemplo, es la mujer quien principalmente confecciona los tejidos y la cerámica.

Por otra parte la recolección de los materiales se caracteriza por ir acompañada de ritos y ceremonias en agradecimiento a la madre tierra por las materias naturales y los dones entregados.

En el caso rapa nui su más característica expresión artística es la danza, música y artesanía realizada en madera tallada y en conchas de moluscos, en la realización de ornamentos como collares, pulseras, aros.


In Easter Island an interesting native Music taken root in old traditions and legend transmitted orally of generation in generation exists. In the imagination of its songs it has been observed a rural folclor that are different of Polinesic origin. One of these manifestations is the Sau-Sau, that is a song and pascuense popular dance of samoano origin, that has become a characteristic dance of the Island.

In addition, other songs and popular dances dedicated to their Gods are interpreted, to the fighting spirits, rain and the love. The Rapa Nui people are good dancers and seems that its great passion was the Music and the dance. They are regionalistic and they only dance his own dances like the popular Sau-Sau, the Pascuense Tango, the Tari-Tarita and other dances arrived from Tahiti. The songs are interpreted by sets or some popular singers of the island.


Tamuré. A Tahitian dance with two main aspects. The true acrobatics that are precise to develop with the legs, in extraordinarily fast movements and the execution of more or less violent movements of the pelvis (R. Campbell). The women in counted opportunities dare to make the steps or figures of the Tamuré.

Sau Sau. In the celebrations the honor corresponds to the Sau Sau, of samoano origin. During the night meetings are organized, in which they dance. The women show all to their grace and ease that accompanies with the soft movement of their hands. In the Sau Sau, the pairs are united and separated with fast movements of hips. In this dance, in special the women, they put a clothes of pens of colors.

Ula Ula. Dance of tahitiano origin. It dances in the Island as a reminiscense of the original one, according to doctor Ramon Campbell. Dancing generally in run rate of alive, the pairs are used to dance separated, making specially wave with their hips in lateral form, smoothly, and resting the feet alternatively on the heel and the end of the fingers, with rotation of them. The women accompany the dance with graceful movements by the arms, doing to undulate them in very harmonious form, either to a side or towards the other, simulating in many occasions the act to comb the hair with a hand and to be contemplated in an invisible mirror with the other hand. All this with a grace and very feminine and captivating suggestion.

Rock Art

Another important and singular manifestation in the rapa Nui culture is the rock Art that was developed through two modalities: petroglifos and paintings.

In the island exist around 1,000 sites of Rock Art with approximately 5,000 registered motives, that are grouped in 12 groups emphasizing the anthropomorphous figures and isolated anthropomorphous characteristics, birds, species, ceremonial objects, boats have settled down, etc.

The main motive in the petroglifos is the representation of the man bird or Tangata Manu. It is engraving on rocks of Mata Ngarau in the ceremonial village of Orongo next to volcano Rano Kau. The paintings are littler in the island, being in places like Motu Nui (one of small barren islands in front of Orongo), in inner walls of some houses of Orongo, in the Ana Kai Tangata cavern and other caverns located in the North coast.