RIP ROGER INGERTON
The tattoo community recently lost another legend: Roger Ingerton.
While it's always sad to write these posts, they are important to honor the men and women who shaped our industry. I learned of Roger's passing from tattooer, anthropologist and author of numerous books on Polynesian tattooing, Tricia Allen. In a memorial post on her Facebook pages, Tricia captures Roger's tattoo legacy:
Roger incorporated Polynesian legend and myth, blending it with traditional (and sometimes contemporary) motifs to create the most impressive Maori/Polynesian-inspired art decades ago, well before the revival got started. In fact, Roger truly kick-started the Maori tattoo renaissance doing moko kauae [chin tattoo] on Maori women back in the 1980s and creating these spectacular renditions of Maori legend. Besides being so creative, he was kind-hearted.Roger's work (and kind personality) are featured in this 2007 video profile we did for my old Needled.com site (embedded above). In it, Roger discusses his beginnings in tattooing, from learning to hand-poke at age 16, to the great influences in his life, such as tattoo master Paulo Sulu'ape, who is honored for his work in the traditional Samoan tattoo revival. You can read more about Roger's journey, in his own words, on this Yellowman blog post.
Roger's own adaptation of traditional Maori patterns was innovative and inspiring, and tributes across social media attest to how open and giving he was in sharing his art and knowledge. He will be missed.