Video: Tattoo Fest draws best crowd yet
Alega Beach was the hot spot to be last weekend when Tisa’s Barefoot Bar hosted the 9th Annual Tisa’s Tattoo Fest in American Samoa.
A huge crowd of spectators and tattoo lovers from all over the world gathered to see the best of a new generation of artists in American Samoa put to the test. Tattoos — traditional and contemporary, siapo, elei and clay art, music, dance and a fashion show were all part of the three-day event.
Three ‘Best of the Fest’ awards went to Joe Ioane (Off the Rock Tattoos) for Most Creative Polynesian Tribal Male Tattoo, Most Creative Female Tattoo and the Leg or Tauvae category. ‘Best of the Fest’ shoulder/sleeve award went to Duffy Hudson (Manaia Tattoo Shop).
El Uiligitone (Free Style Ink Tattoos) received the ‘Best of the Fest’ Taulima artist’s award.
This year’s award for the Pe’a went to American Samoa’s one and only master Tufuga, Wilson Fitiao Su’a Suluape with the Malu award for the work of Pita Sa Su’a Suluape worn by Ms. Leilani Curry. A brief Siva performance gave plenty of opportunity for photos.
Judging the ‘Best of the Fest’ were Afioga Tupou Sa Su’a of Samoa and ASCC Art Instructor Reggie Meredith who gave the crowd real insight into the intricacies of the Tatau. Their presence, experience and educational background added quality and value as they chose the winners.
According to the judges, both modern and traditional tattoos were judged on clarity, placement of the art on the skin and the completeness and straightness of the lines. They told the spectators that the art should move with the skin and the ink should not run or fade after the first year. Equally important for health reasons is sanitation.
One of the highlights of the three days included the Ava ceremony presented by Miss American Samoa Ariel Maloata who was accompanied by MASI chairperson Meafou Imo and the five contestants vying for this year’s crown.
Exhibitions and displays of art work by Reggie Meredith’s ASCC art students made for a great early Christmas shopping experience. It was refreshing to see the pride of ownership for the siapo, elei and clay art that clearly shows the students are connecting more to their cultural roots with each emerging generation.
A first for the Tatau art was when Reggie Meredith confidently took the stage with Master Tufuga Wilson Fitiao Su’a Suluape to serve as Toso, “In my lifetime, I have never witnessed a female Toso here on Tutuila Island,” said Tattoo Fest founder Tisa Fa’amuli.
Rounding off the event on Sunday was the popular Pacific Roots fashion show, a performance by Hot Island Hula dance group, and great food reminiscent of Jimmy Buffets ‘Cheese Burgers in Paradise’ got the crowd ready for the Barefoot Wine provided by IMPEX Samoa.
Under the tropical sky, the Tattoo Fest crowd spilled onto the beach and into the water to end a perfect day and a perfect Tattoo Fest 2013.
“We are grateful and momoli atu le fa’afetai to all our sponsors for their support throughout our nine years,” said Tisa.
Tisa’s Tattoo Fest is brought to you by American Samoa Visitors Bureau and Samoa News.
Other sponsors include Barefoot Wine/Impex, Tool Shop, GHC Reid Ltd & Co. distributors of Vailima Beer, McConnell Dowell, Bluesky Communications, Ace American Industries, Computer World, Industrial Gases, Cost U Less, Tropik Traders, Trophies & Things, DDW, and Radio Stations KHJ & V103.
On behalf of Tisa’s Tattoo Fest and Tattoo Artists, fa’afetai ma ia manuia a outou taumafaiga ma galuega.
THE NEW COMMENTS PROCESS
To make comments, you will need to register. You can register under your real name or use a 'screen' name. This way, people will be able to follow comments and make comments back and forth to each other. If you choose to use a 'screen name' no one will know your true identity. In either case, no email addresses will be available to anyone. It is an automated process. If you have questions, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You currently are not logged in, please LOGIN to post comments.