Topic: Tā moko/Kirituhi

Miss Ink Auckland says women should wear their tattoos proud

By Aroha Treacher
  • Auckland
  • North Island: East Coast

Alex Christie is fresh off the scene of winning the Auckland division of New Zealand's largest tattoo pageant Miss Ink.

Hailing from the small town of Te Wairoa in Hawke's Bay, she says women should be proud of their tattoos and not buy into negative body image.

She is a walking piece of art, with every tattoo telling its own story.

Alex Christie says, “If you're bold enough and courageous enough to own your individuality, then it’s very empowering.”

Iwitea Marae on the outskirts of Te Wairoa is where her roots are and she's proud to show it.

Her uncle, with more than 40 years’ experience in tā moko and tattoo artistry, gave her the moko she wears.

Broughton Johnson says, “Very proud to see one of our own getting up there, you won't see me getting up there.”

She says though some people can be judgemental of women with tattoos, her Miss Ink win has only strengthened her against any negative prejudices.

Christie says, “They make me feel beautiful, sexy and I hold my head with pride every time I walk down the street, roll on summer!

At 39 years old, her living masterpiece is by no means complete as it evolves with her journey through life.

The 12 finalists from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch will compete in the finals which will be held in Parnell, Auckland this November.