Easter Island: Sculptors of the Pacific

Easter Island: Sculptors of the Pacific

Easter Island: Sculptors of the Pacific

Easter Island is one of the most isolated on Earth. However, its people, the Rapa Nui, have left behind an exceptional heritage: Dwellings, ceremonial altars, and above all nearly 900 moai, these giant statues measuring 3 to 5 meters on average and which are scattered all over the island. Supposedly built between the 13th and the 17th centuries, they were sculpted out of blocks of tuff, a volcanic rock extracted from the Rano Raraku volcano. They were then placed over an ahu, a type of platform made out of basalt that served as an altar.

How were the Rapa Nui able to carve out basalt, a hard, volcanic rock, with the limited tools at their disposal at the time? And how, long before the advent of the modern wheel and of metal on the island, did the locals cut, shape, and transport their stone giants weighing several tons? This film presents all the current theories expressed by experts, including the latest scientific hypotheses: What if the moai weren’t transported in their “finished” state, as has been the common belief for centuries? And what if the quarry from which they stem wasn’t abandoned, instead of being voluntarily transformed into the grandiose monument it is today? Many other remains attest to the locals’ impressive mastery: The techniques to cultivate their fields by collecting water using rocks, their most prestigious dwellings, or even a hydraulic site that was only recently discovered, and the meaning of which remains unknown…

In this compelling, 52-minute documentary, we’ll visit various archeological sites led by the greatest experts to reveal and understand the grandeur of the Rapa Nui know-how. Thanks to 3D reconstructions, you’ll be able to grasp the construction techniques used by the Rapa Nui and to get a sense of the genius of these ancient builders.

Genre: History, Our World, Documentary

Duration: 52mins

Languages: English, French

Rights: Inflight & Transportation – Worldwide excl France

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