Tag Archives: Kira Dane

Exploring Horimono: Japan’s Tattoo Pilgrimage at LAAAPFF 2020

2 Oct

By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available to viewers in Southern California (excluding San Diego County) from October 1, 2020 at 12pm PT to October 31, 2020 at 11:59pm PT. Click here to watch the film on Eventive.

The Japanese word Horimono (彫物) does not necessarily translate to defining the same art form which the English term tattoo expresses. The mini-documentary, Horimono: Japan’s Tattoo Pilgrimage, shows that this country’s older generation sees a difference in how to express themselves through full body art modification. Some conflict exists. The media in Asia stereotyped the image of what it means to have a pattern on their skin–they are historically labelled a criminal. This belief dates back to the 4th Century.

This mini documentary aims to correct all the misconceptions.

The soundtrack is just as entrancing. The English definition includes how the word can signal the beat of a drum at night to tell soldiers it’s time to go to their quarters. We see it played at a temple in Oyama during a ritual of purification. The mountain shrine welcomes not only the artists who still practice the ancient art but also the men, whose body is fully covered in imagery from the Edo period (1603 – 1868). They wear it like a suit–a badge of honour.

Continue reading