One of the reasons that I love to bring tā moko into art galleries is that it exposes and opens up the art form and cultural practice, to an entirely different audience, an audience that may not ever have the chance to see tā moko happening in real life, in any other situation. The potential for engagement with the public is great in an art gallery setting, and I enjoy answering the many and varied questions that people come up with. Having tā moko artists working in an art gallery space is magnetic, cutting edge, and a rare opportunity for gallery viewers to witness the tā moko process.
Another reason that I enjoy bringing tā moko into art gallery (and museum) settings is because I believe that all of our Māori art forms are inter-related and connected. Our various different art forms are at their strongest when put together and combined, contrasted against each other, complimenting one another, feeding into, informing and in conversation with one another. A decorated wharenui is a prime example of this, as is kapa haka where you see many of our art forms in relationship together at once.
The idea of inter-related art forms is part of the reason why I love collaborating and working alongside other artists, that use different mediums to me. It is also why I am currently enjoying the use of taonga puoro by Jerome Kavanagh, to compliment my tā moko process.