This version of the Madonna and child was carved by Pataromu Tamatea of Te Arawa for a new Catholic chapel in Bay of Plenty. The carver indicated the Madonna's spiritual status in Māori terms by giving her a full moko (facial tattoo). However the non-Māori priest refused to accept the carving and said that he found it offensive to his church. Catholic and other missionaries sometimes failed to understand traditional Māori responses to Christianity.
Using this item
Permission of the Auckland War Memorial Museum Tamaki Paenga Hira must be obtained before any re-use of this image.