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Documentaries // Travel, nature & discovery

TATAU : THE REBIRTH OF THE TATTOO


27'
2007


VERSION(S)
French, English and International

SUPPORT(S)
SD

PRODUCER(S)
Jour J Productions

DIRECTOR
Gérard Jumel

The practice of the ancestral art of tattooing had virtually disappeared in the French Polynesia following the prohibition of all forms of pagan culture and beliefs by the missionaries. For the past 20 years or so tattoos are enjoying a comeback thanks to the efforts by Tavana Salmon who is determined to keep alive the memory of this particular facet of the Polynesian culture. With tattoos enjoying considerable popularity today one can ask why the new generation takes such an interest in this ancient practice. What lies beneath the intense longing for having one’s body decorated permanently with motifs bearing a symbolic significance?
We shall witness to what extent tattooing is an individual adventure in which the more or less conscious will to have these designs engraved upon one’s skin is also the expression of an inner sense of identity. For Taniera, tattoo-artist and sculptor, “a tattoo is more than just for a lifetime; it also changes the life of the one who carries it.”
Currently, Polynesia is witnessing a veritable movement in the quest of its rich cultural past and an urge to resist the drab uniformity that globalization tends to impose on us.


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