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- Let's witness what happens once a tattoo is finished in Samoa, there is an elaborate ceremony (and very symbolic) rarely witnessed and recorded, here it is for the first time on youtube.
Samoan tattoos, or tatau in the Samoan language, is a very important part of Samoan culture and history. Tataus are done by tufuga ta tatau and they are considered as having high standings in the Samoan society. They are a symbol of status and rank and is worn by both men and women. Almost all of the men wear tatau and the patterns worn by them are usually larger, referred to as pe’a, than those worn by the women, which are called malu.
For some, Samoan tattoos may just be beautiful patterns. For Samoans, tatau is a way of life. It is literally a visual representation of one’s life and the pain one suffered to get the tatau along with undergoing the extensive and painful process of getting the tatau itself.
The art of tatau dates back to more than 2000 years and the tradition is well-preserved by Samoans. It is an important part of their identity. Some people might say that that’s very primitive but the beauty and rich history of Samoan tattoos are beyond words and the fact that it’s still alive today is a testament to that and how much Samoans value it.