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Weekend with Hawaiian Tatau (Tattoo) Artist Keone Nunes

Updated: Jun 30, 2021

Keone Nunes and his apprentice Cory Kamehanaokala Taum tatau EHCC member Kona Stewart

During the weekend of May 11 – 12, we were so blessed and honored to have Master Hawaiian Tatau Artist, Keone Nunes with us here in the D.C. area. He also brought his apprentice, Cory Taum, who was absolutely wonderful!

“Keone considers himself more of a practitioner than a tattooist. He brought back the art of traditional tattooing to Hawai`i in the 90s, learning from the Samoan kakau (tattoo) master, Sua Suluape Paulo. It’s an art form that doesn’t use machinery, just traditional hand-made tools – made of whale bone, wood and fibers – to tap natural ink into the skin.”

About 20 EHCC members and friends had the honor and privilege of meeting Kumu Keone and receiving a tatau from him.

Keone Nunes and his apprentice Cory Kamehanaokala Taum tatau EHCC member Moana McAdams

“When you receive a tattoo, you not only change physically, but oftentimes, there is a deeper change within you. It should be taken for its root value, getting back to the basics of who we are as a people.” - Keone Nunes

In addition to Hawaiian tatau, Kumu also shared his Filipino Tribal Tattoo art design with two people. Here are some of the designs from Master Keone Nunes:

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