Watch: Sāmoan New Zealanders talk about their tatau (Sāmoan tattoo)

Five Sāmoan New Zealanders share what their tatau means to them.


ʻUa faʻasoa mai e tagata Sāmoa e toʻalima mai Niu Sila le tāua o le tatau iā i latou.


Tokorima ngā uri o Hāmoa nō Aotearoa e kōrero ana mō ā rātou tatau.

“When I use it as an orator it brings mana to the words that I speak because the tatau in a sense is an ancient language.”

“To be wearing something that is so visible and so out there … it’s given me more of a sense of confidence in my own standing as a Sāmoan woman.”

“In receiving my tatau was I guess in a way an eye-opener for me. I knew that I was a part of history in completing my tatau.”

“It means family to me. It means a connection to my family, where I come from, my heritage, my parents, my extended family.”

“You know, as much as you want to show the malu off it’s something that you’ve just got to respect. You only show the malu when it needs to be shown.”