Titled:  Makawe o Te Ahi

Artist:  Lorna Tawhiti

Iwi:  Waikato Tainui, Ngāi Te Rangi

Materials:  Digital print, canvas, frame

Description:  Contemporary Digital Print

From a collection of Wāhine Toa portraits by mixed media and tāmoko artist Lorna Marie Tawhiti.

Makawe o Te Ahi is a regal contemporary interpretation lending one’s thoughts to the feminine superpower of Mahuika, keeper of the fire.  Her connection to Matariki is ancient in the ceremonies of Hautapu keeping the embers burning.  Her image in this depiction is highlighted in her glorious mane of fire reminding humankind of our own fragilities as kaitiaki of this taonga.

Dimensions:  900 x 1500 mm


Lorna Tawhiti

Lorna, of Ngāi Te Rangi and Waikato Tainui descent, was born in 1970 in South Auckland. Lorna spent 17 years in Australia from the age of 7, returning to New Zealand with her Ōtaki born husband in 1993. Considering herself an artist-in-training, Lorna spent 30+ years developing her artistic creative style which continues to evolve. Training in Visual Arts, Lorna explored more in commercial graphic art and design. There were two significant ‘pulls’ in Lorna’s life from an early age: to be a tattoo artist and to be a teacher. After spending nearly 20 years as a teacher, she has spent the last three year learning to tattoo. She also set up a business, named May 15 Tattoo, in 2015. She has since combined both graphic and computer art experience to create artworks in tattoo and digital art form. Typically, Lorna’s art has fine lines and feminine details relatable to her inspirations: whānau, te ao Maori, nature, mana wāhine, memories and spiritual themes.


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