Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Maori Tattoo Expert Says Tattoos Are More Than Skin Deep

GISBORNE, New Zealand (Wireless Flash - FlashNews) – Seems like everyone and their mother is getting tattooed these days, but one Maori tattoo artist warns the marks are more than skin deep.

Derek Lardelli is a world renowned expert on “ta moko,” which is what the Maoris of New Zealand call their ancient art of tattooing.

He’s noticed more people than ever are getting tribal symbols placed on their body – without being aware of their cultural significance.

Many tattoo symbols are based on genealogy and shouldn’t be placed on just anyone, especially because there are separate symbols and designs for men and women.

That’s why he says tattoos aren’t something that should be done spontaneously.

Lardelli says a good tattoo requires a consultation session and suggests using an artist who is able to explain the intimate history behind the designs and their genealogical connection to you.

Lardelli and other Maori tattoo artists will help Americans get an inkling of tattoo knowledge starting Aug. 4 when they appear at a 10-day exhibition at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.

(Contact numbers available only to subscribing media or trial media users. You can request samples at the Wireless Flash web site.)
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