I recently spent about a week tattooing in Taihape at Winiata Marae. In general I mostly prefer to stay within my own rohe, and work within areas that I have some whakapapa link or affiliation to (except when I am overseas) - that's just how I prefer to roll whenever possible. However since my partner invited me to work in his rohe at his marae, I was more than happy to pack up my gear and head to Taihape. Furthermore, marae are one of my absolute favorite places to work, along with galleries and museums, so I jumped at the chance to work inside the whare there. As it happened, I did discover a link between my extended whānau and the whānau at Winiata Marae.
It was snowing and really freezing cold the week that we were there, as you can tell by my attire! It's hard to stay fashionable when you are so cold!
Whilst in Taihape I had the pleasure and privilege of tattooing a moko kauae for a local kuia. For me, moko kauae is the epitome of my tā moko practice and it is my favorite type of moko to do. Moko kauae has always been a strong motivating force for me and a large part of why I got into, and have stuck at tā moko. I want to see more and more wāhine Māori take on and wear their moko kauae with pride, strength and dignity - particularly within my own whānau, hapū and iwi.
Some friends of mine at Kikorua Films came and stayed with us for part of our trip and made a little film clip and took some photos. I think they did a great job of capturing the essence of the environment we were working in, and the mahi that we did there.
Moko kauae is a very special and important kaupapa. If you would like to talk me about getting your own moko kauae done, please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for reading!