Mahiriki Tangaroa is a New Zealand raised Cook Islands artist. She majored in photography at the Canterbury University School of Fine Arts documenting the vanishing Cook Islands cultural heritage in her photographic assignments. In 1999 she began to paint and is now one of a small group of contemporary women artists in the Cook Islands.
In 2000 Tangaroa was appointed as curator of the Cook Islands National Museum and following her appointment, in 2003 took up position of Gallery Director at the Beachcomber Gallery in Avarua.
Mahiriki's paintings contain many flora and fauna patterns, sourced from old Cook Islands tapa designs which are rarely seen outside museum displays. In her paintings Tangaroa also incorporates the 'not so bright side of paradise' by attempting to record life in the islands of a younger generation Cook Islander.
In May 2008, Air New Zealand sponsored Mahiriki's first solo show in the South Island, held at Gallery De Novo. This show was a major success and since then her works have been sold regularly through the Gallery to New Zealand and overseas clients and collectors.