Wellington: Bollywood actor Sidharth Malhotra took his newly-formed bond with New Zealand closer when he decided to get a traditional Maori design temporarily inked on his forearm at The National Tattoo Museum of New Zealand here. The temporary tattoo left Sidharth thrilled, and he says he is now enthused about getting a permanent body art.
Sidharth Malhotra. Pic/ IANS
Sidharth's intent behind the act was to learn more about the country's Maori culture. And what was more interesting was that he didn't get his tattoo at a shop or parlour -- it was done at a tattoo museum, the interiors of which are done up interestingly in a barrage of images of traditional, contemporary and elaborate coloured tattoos.
Maori tattoo artist Steve Maddock -- who started the museum -- took Sidharth around the museum, sharing tales about the stories behind the traditional Maori moko (tattoo).
Together, they even chose an interesting design for Sidharth, who is the tourism ambassador for New Zealand in India, to get made on his arm.
After his temporary tattoo was done, he was tempted to get a permanent one... but well, he's kept it for another day!
He tweeted an image of the tattoo on Twitter, and wrote: "It's a Maori whaletail which represents speed, strength and success! But sadly not a permanent one."
In an exclusive interview to IANS, Sidharth said: “The stories behind traditional Maori moko are fascinating. The tattoo museum was a very interesting place. I loved the strong tribal affiliations of Maori moko and the complexities of their designs. It is amazing how a tattoo can tell a complete story about the person who wears the artwork.”
Sidharth is here on his first trip to New Zealand, and he has been creating memories of a lifetime by indulging in adventures like Skywalk and the skydive.
The National Tattoo Museum of New Zealand was opened in 2001 to ensure the rich history of ta moko, or tattoo, was shared.
Maddock's collection features a mix of historical tattoo artefacts, tools, illustrations and information on techniques and styles, from the country and more.
The ta moko is considered a treasure to the Maoris, as it is said to contain messages specific to the wearer and tells the story of the wearer’s family, tribal affiliations and their placing within social structures.