PICK OF THE WEEK:: Almanac 2015: Tonga
The only Pacific nation never to have been colonized, Tonga transitioned to a constitutional monarchy in 2010. The Ministry of Education, Women’s Affairs and Culture organizes public cultural programs, including the annual national-heritage festival Heilala (6/30–7/12). Because the government invests in the tourist trade, Tonga has a well-developed system of cultural institutions centered in the capital Nuku’alofa, but none exhibit contemporary art. Instead, the Langafonua Women’s Handicraft Association and Gallery supports Tongan craftswomen, and its Royal Art Gallery division showcases historical royal items donated by Princess Pilolevu and Princess Nanasipau’u Tuku’aho.