Vice on a really cool report on some very stunning pictures of the largest gang in New Zealand and their very hardcore outfits, tattoos, and way of life:
In the 1960s, a gang of variously disaffected youth sprang up in Hawkes Bay, New Zealand. They didn’t ride bikes, but they quickly developed all the trimmings of an outlaw motorcycle club: patches, club colors, and a fiercely violent process of initiation. They came to be known as the Mighty Mongrel Mob and today they’re the largest gang in the country, with around 30 chapters across both islands.
Media access to the Mob is rare, which is why this photo series by Jono Rotman is kind of a big deal. Jono, who is a Wellington born photographer now living in NYC, cut his teeth capturing New Zealand’s prisons and psychiatric wards, before he took on gang life in 2007. We asked him how he convinced hardened gang members to sit for large format photography, and what he learned along the way.
I cannot even begin to fathom the type of pain these guys endured to get those facial tattoos. That is some of the most intricate artwork I have ever seen inked on someone’s face. They are quite cool yet eerie at the same time.