Tā moko now available at Te Puia

By Mere McLean
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty

Tā moko is a new experience being offered at Te Puia, NZ Maori Arts and Crafts Institute.

Arekatera Maihi of Te Puia says “What we are doing is tā moko.  We have come through the school of carving and now we have moved onto tā moko.  It's not Kirituhi, this is tā moko.”

Tā moko is a skin art and Maihi says it can also be worn by non-Māori. 

Maurice Gleeson of Ireland is here today to receive a moko, “One thing I definitely wanted to avoid in any way, being inappropriate in Maori culture or in some way inadvertently offending people by having tā moko- but I was reassured I was deserving of it so that was important to me as well.”

Te Puia says it is mandated to protect, promote and perpetuate Māori arts, crafts and culture.  Arekatera Maihi says tā moko has now been added to their mandate.

“Tā moko is a treasure which is why we have opened up this area for it” says Maihi.