Rongo Tangatake Tuhura was born in Gisborne, New
Zealand in 1971, to parents Romeo Tuhura and Charlotte Tibble, each
sharing a rich and diverse heritage. Being of Ngati Porou decent, Rongo
acknowledges also his Spanish, Scottish, Norwegian, French, and Lebanese
In 2008 Rongo emerged a recent
graduate of the Te Toi o Nga Rangi Bachelor of Maori Visual Arts program
run by esteemed local Maori Visual Arts School Toihoukura, Gisborne.
Prior learning in multimedia: visual and graphic design held Rongo in
good stead to progress swiftly and successfully through the program.
However, like many artists, Rongo’s love and appreciation of art began
at a very early age.
Inspired by the
masters of the Renaissance era, Rongo was later encouraged to delve into
his own culture and heritage where among many things he discovered
diverse genealogies about the pantheon of the gods, great leaders of
men, and inspiring histories concerning the audacious heroes and
heroines of Maoridom.
Tūhura is one of the most exciting illustrators of Māori concepts I
have come across. His works are pictorial gems carefully thought out
and created. They need to be enjoyed as individual pieces"
Darcy Nicholas - General Manager Pataka Museum, Porirua City.