My first trip to Paris: City of art, love and museums!

In May 2014 I was blessed to have the opportunity to travel to Paris with my baby and my mother, to attend the opening of an exhibition at Musee du quai Branly, called 'Tattooers, Tattooed' that featured one of my paintings. 

 My painting featured in the exhibition at Musee du quay Branly in Paris.

My painting featured in the exhibition at Musee du quay Branly in Paris.

While I was in Paris for the exhibition opening, I also did some tattooing. Most of the people that got kirituhi by me were French - and all of them were very respectful, grateful and appreciative of Māori culture.

 Freehand draw up for one of the kirituhi I made in Paris, before the tattooing process begins.

Freehand draw up for one of the kirituhi I made in Paris, before the tattooing process begins.

 The finished kirituhi.

The finished kirituhi.

 The view from our coffee spot one morning at Musee du quai Branly.

The view from our coffee spot one morning at Musee du quai Branly.

We were there for about two weeks, and it was awesome! It was my first time in Europe and I definitely want to go back there. We stayed in an apartment close to the Eiffel Tower and Musee du quai Branly for the first week, and then we moved to the Montemartre Arrondissement which is known for hosting many artists over the centuries, including Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali and Vincent Van Gogh. I really liked the diversity of the Montemartre area, and there was heaps to see and do there.

 All set to leave our apartment on our very first morning in Paris! 

All set to leave our apartment on our very first morning in Paris! 

Some of the things that I loved about Paris:

The museums. They seemed to have a museum for everything imaginable! Visiting Musee du Louvre was definitely a highlight.

 One of the amazing ceilings at Musee du Louvre!

One of the amazing ceilings at Musee du Louvre!

 I loved the numerous depictions of the mother and child at Musee du Louvre.

I loved the numerous depictions of the mother and child at Musee du Louvre.

The food. Of course Paris is known for its cuisine and wine, and it did not disappoint! Breakfast, lunch and dinner was always a treat, and I loved to have my morning coffee at a little cafe on the street, watching all the different people go by.

The attention to detail. I really noticed how seemingly everything is beautified or ornately detailed in some way. The most unexpected and mundane things had the effort and time put into making them aesthetically pleasing. Presentation in Paris is really big and it was lovely to experience such attention to detail.


Catching the metro out to the suburbs with some of my friends from Newtown, Wellington (yes they were in Paris at the same time as me!) to watch a Rod Taylor reggae gig was some unexpected fun!

A spontaneous freestyle jam in the streets of Montmartre with some new friends we had just met that had a guitalele (the first time I had ever seen such an instrument) was a really memorable moment.

Going on an impromptu adventure on foot and by metro, around Paris with my Italian client-turned-new-friend, Domenica, was really enjoyable.

Eating small portions of several delicious dishes whilst standing up at a tiny place in St Germaine with another new friend was pretty cool - and walking around the streets afterwards, looking in the windows of all the art galleries of that area was the best part.

The fashion. There are so many people from all around the world in Paris, and I loved checking out all of the different styles that people were rocking. Even the men get into fashion over there, and they were super stylish!

 Hat that I customized over there. I find a hat useful when i'm tattooing as it keeps the hair out of my face.

Hat that I customized over there. I find a hat useful when i'm tattooing as it keeps the hair out of my face.

 An example of the sheer awesomeness peppered throughout the city. This was just down the road from our first apartment.

An example of the sheer awesomeness peppered throughout the city. This was just down the road from our first apartment.

 They even had a Museum of Eroticsm!

They even had a Museum of Eroticsm!

I met some great people and made some cool friends and I am super grateful and appreciative for the experience! Thank you Paris! Here is a French article about the Māori section of the exhibition in Paris.