Portrait of Pikau Teimana of Putaruru, wearing a piupiu and with the words "Aohau Taute" tattooed on her right arm, taken ca 1910 by an unknown photographer. She wears two huia feathers in her hair, and two pendants in the shape of fish around her neck.
Ngahiraka (Ema) Kennedy 1842-1890. Tairawhiti Museum Gisborne. Maori, a Moko on her chin, sacred ceremony,direct descendant of the paramount chief who had come from Havaii with the great migration,blue eyed, fair skinned and very beautiful. Her name means “many silks.Maori Cheif Takato and his wahine (women.) This Chief, from Mayor Island, gave Matarena to the Commander James Wood, from H.M.S. Buffalo, as a "comfort wife." From this union Ngahiraka was born in 1842,
When New Zealand was colonized in the the ancient Māori practice of moko kauae—or sacred female facial tattooing—began to fade away. Now the art form is having a resurgence. Here& what it means to stamp your identity on your face.