The skin deep art has taken Iceland by storm and this documentary is about that. Listin sem leynist undir skinninu Matthías Már Magnússon og Eggert Gunnarsson hafa hafist handa við gerð heimildarmyndar um tattú-menninguna á Íslandi.
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Team

Eggert Gunnarsson

Creator
Videographer and documentary maker
  • Videographer

Matthías Magnússon

Creator
  • Radio
  • Host
  • Researcher

Further Information

Inked in Iceland

Tattoo in Iceland is a documentary that will explore the tattoo scene in Iceland as it is now. There is currently a buoyant local tattoo scene that has never been as vibrant before. It wasn't until the 1980's that Icelanders had the opportunity to get a tattoo locally,previously having to go abroad. Those who did have themselves tattooed before 1980 were mainly sailors and fishermen, who used the body art as a way of expressing themselves in foreign ports. Their story will be told.

The history of the skin-deep art

Tattoo as an art form is far from being new. Humans have marked their bodies with tattoos for thousands of years. These permanent designs—sometimes plain, sometimes elaborate but always personal, have served as amulets, status symbols, declarations of love, signs of religious beliefs and even forms of punishment.

The earliest known examples were fora long time Egyptian and were present on several female mummies dated to about 2000 B.C. But following the more recent discovery of the Iceman from the area of the Italian-Austrian border in 1991 and his tattoo patterns, this date has been pushed back a further thousand years when he was carbon-dated at around 5,200 years old.

The current art scene

We will shed light on why people find themselves compelled to express themselves in this manner and how come tattooing as an art form is as vibrant as it has ever been. By talking to the artists, their clients, art historians and people who research popular culture we will look deep into the scene, where it came from and where it is going in the future.

Currently there are several Icelandic tattoo artists working abroad who are well respected within their trade. There is a growing interest and demand for tattoo in Iceland. At least two tattoo-conferences take place in Reykjavik each year. They are well attended by local people and foreign artists come in droves to showcase their skill and work for the local clientele, who are very interested to see what's new on the tattoo scene in Europe and the US.

The domestic tattoo artists are often well educated in fine art or graphic design before they hone their skills in wielding the tattoo gun instead of the paint brush. We will interview these people and try to find out what motivates them and how they came to use the skin as a canvas. In addition to that we will have the opportunity to film the artists at work, witnessing first hand how an idea becomes a work of art on someone's body.

Delving into the past

Another aspect to the documentary is that recently a tattoo gun kit and accompanying art work (called flashes) were found in Reykjavik. We are researching this, trying to discover where this came from and there is a possibility this could take us on a journey to the USA, to Chicago to be specific where the art work originates from. The initial research indicates the gun and the flashes came to Iceland in the early 1940's with the Indigo Command- the US defense force that defended the country during the Second World War.

To be tattooed is not a taboo

There are numerous well know personalities that have been tattooed over the last few years. They have fueled the ever increasing popularity of this art form and helped make it more acceptable. It is shed it's underground origins and has got a firm foothold in the popular culture of today. However, it can still be edgy and have an attitude and allow the people who create this skin deep art to make statements and tell stories. It also allows their clients that supply their skin as the canvas to wear the imagery with pride. Among the personalities who are now wearing this art form are footballers, rock and pop artist and numerous others. We will inter-cut the film with their stories.

This film is about all this and much more,as we feel that the surface has only been scratched at the moment. With your help we intend to delve deeper and produce the definitive documentary about this fascinating subject.

Tattú á Íslandi

Tattú á Íslandi er heimildarmynd sem mun skoða tattú-menninguna á Íslandi líkt og hún er í dag. Það var ekki fyrr en upp úr 1980 að Íslendingar höfðu tækifæri til að láta húðflúra sig á Íslandi. Fyrir þann tíma urðu þeir að fara erlendis. Í rauninni voru þeir sem létu húðflúra sig fyrir þann tíma iðulega sjómenn sem kynntust þessu tjáningarformi á ferðum sínum í erlendum hafnarborgum. Saga þeirra verður sögð í myndinni.

Saga listformsins sem leynist undir húðinni

Húðflúr sem listform er langt í frá að vera nýtt af nálinni enda hefur fólk stundað það að húðflúra sig í mörg þúsund ár. Þessar langvarandi myndir sem eru stundum einfaldar, stundum flóknar, alltaf persónulegar, hafa þjónað sem verndargripir, stöðutákn, ástarjátningar, trúartákn og jafnvel notuð sem refsing.

Fyrstu dæmin um húðflúr voru lengi vel frá Egyptalandi og voru sýnileg á nokkrum kvenkyns múmíum sem áttu uppruna sinn frá því um 2000 fyrir Krist. Árið 1991 fannst hinn svokallaði Ísmaður á landamærum Ítalíu og Austurríkis, hann bar húðflúr og sú staðreynd hefur ýtt tímasetningunni á fyrstu þekktu húðflúrunum aftur um þúsund ár. Þegar Ísmaðurinn var aldursgreindur kom í ljós að hann er um það bil 5200 ára gamall.

Tattú á Íslandi núna

Þó nokkrir íslenskir flúrarar starfa núna erlendis og eru virtir innan sinnar greinar. Það er vaxandi áhugi og eftirspurn eftir húðflúri á Íslandi. Í það minnsta tvær húðflúrráðstefnur eru haldnar íReykjavík ár hvert. Á þessar ráðstefnur koma erlendir flúrarar til að sýna list sína og flúra það nýjasta sem er að gerast í listgreininni um allan heim á gesti, íslenska sem erlenda.

Íslensku flúrararnir eru oft vel menntaðir listamenn í hinum ýmsu listgreinum: málaralist, grafískri hönnun og svo framvegis sem fóru svo að takast á við húðflúr og munda byssuna í stað pensils eða blýants. Við munum taka viðtöl við þetta fólk og reyna að komast að því hvað drífur það áfram og hvers vegna þau völdu húðina sem myndflöt en ekki til dæmis striga. Að auki munum við fá tækifæri til að mynda listamennina við iðju sína þar sem viðfáum að sjá hvernig hugmynd verður að listaverki á líkama einhvers.

Kafað í fortíðina

Annar vinkill heimildarmyndarinnar er að nýverið fannst gömul tattú-byssa og svokölluð ,,flöss” hér í Reykjavík. Flöss eru myndir sem listamaðurinn notar til viðmiðunnar þegar hann vinnur með viðskiptavininum. Við erum að rannsaka þetta frekar og reyna að komast að því hvaðan þessi tæki koma og hver kom með þau til landsins. Það er hugsanlegt að þessi þráður liggi til Bandaríkjanna, nánar tiltekið til Chicago. Fyrstu rannsóknir benda til þess að byssurnar og flössin hafi komið til Íslands um 1941 með Indigo Base Command sem var partur af herliði Bandaríkjamanna sem vörðu Ísland í seinni heimsstyrjöldinni.

Tattú er ekki bannorð lengur

Það eru fjölmargir þekktir einstaklingar sem hafa fengið sér húðflúr á síðustu árum. Þetta fólk, bæði innlent og erlent, hefur verið hvatinn sem hefur drifið auknar vinsældir þessa listforms og gert það aðgengilegra. Þetta er ekki jaðarlistform lengur og hefur nú náð fótfestu í hugum almennings og verður sífellt vinsælla. Enn getur húðflúr verið óheflað og gefið listamönnunum sem skapa myndirnar færi á að senda skilaboð og segja sögur sem eru einstakar hverjum og einum sem ber þessar myndir. Á meðal þeirra sem þetta listform prýðir eru fótboltamenn, tónlistarfólk og fjölmargir aðrir. Sögur þeirra verða sagðar í myndinni.

Þessi heimildarmynd verður um allt þetta sem hér að ofan er taliðog meira til. Með ykkar hjálp viljum við kafa enn dýpra í þetta mjög svo áhugaverða efni og gefa raunsæja mynd af menningunni sem er Tattú á Íslandi.

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