Mau Moko: The World of Māori Tattoo

by Ngahuia Te Awekotuku & Linda Waimarie Nikora & Mohi Rua & Rolinda Karapu & Becky Nunes


Mau Moko: The World of Māori Tattoo, published by Penguin, is the result of many years of research by a team at the Māori and Psychology Research Unit at the University of Waikato, including Professor Ngahuia Te Awekotuku, Dr Linda Waimarie Nikora, Mohi Rua and Rolinda Karapu. The book’s scholarship is enhanced by historical images, traditional Māori representations, and the superb portrait photography of Becky Nunes.
The research examined both the traditional and present day use of moko, and explored the cultural and spiritual issues surrounding this body art. Early historical records and manuscript materials were used to review the history and technology of moko, and present day moko wearers and artists were interviewed, and invited to relate dozens of powerful and heart-warming stories. Community participation was an essential element in bringing the research together, as well as in taking the stories, the taonga, and the research back to the people.

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