Story: Tā moko – Māori tattooing

Tattoo expert Tame Poata

Tattoo expert Tame Poata

Tame Poata was the son of Thomas Porter, a British army colonel who fought in the New Zealand wars, and Herewaka Te Rangipaea, a Ngāti Porou woman of mana. Poata served in the South African War, on India's north-west frontier and with the Pioneer Battalion in the First World War, and is seen here wearing his military decorations. From about 1920 he worked as a carver and tohungamoko (tattooing expert). Until his death in 1942 he carried out needle tattooing throughout the East Coast, Urewera, Rotorua and Waikato districts.

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How to cite this page:

Rawinia Higgins, 'Tā moko – Māori tattooing - Tohunga tā moko', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 24 June 2024)

Story by Rawinia Higgins, published 5 Sep 2013