A Melanesian Skin Marking Documentary
Our Lines Connect Us
TEP TOK : OUR LINES CONNECT US
Released January 23rd 2021 at the Auckland Museum
Partly Funded by: Creative NZ
Tep Tok : Our Lines Connect Us is the second Tep Tok (Tap Talk) documentary by Julia Mage'au Gray of Sunameke Productions. A documentary following the skin marking stories of Melanesian women living in New Zealand and Australia with Papua New Guinea and Fiji heritage. The documentary will share the conversations around revival and transmission of knowledge from the perspectives of First Peoples Revivalists from Papua New Guinea, India, Philippines, Borneo, Taiwan, Inuit, Hawai’i and Aotearoa, New Zealand.
Myself as a skin marker and film maker, this sequel has been an avenue to author the stories of the people we’ve marked and met through the work of @melanesianmarks
Travelling, filming and editing Tep Tok : Reading Between Our Lines from 2012 to 2015 was a defining period of time that transformed myself from a dancer and visual artist to then picking up the tools and learning to mark skin. This sequel follows what happened after picking up the tools.
The Tep Tok documentaries are not the typical traditional or cinematic documentary but a layered puzzle piecing of the many voices from the stories shared with myself and my family.
So thankful to the many voices that shared their stories.
-Julia Mage'au Gray
Thank you to those who shared their time and thoughts:
First Peoples Revivalists from Papua New Guinea, India, Philippines, Borneo, Taiwan, Inuit, Hawai’i and Aotearoa, New Zealand.
Papua New Guinea: Julia Mageau Gray, Salevasa Etoliuna Gray, Michaelyn Aisa Pokarop (Melanesian Marks)
Nagaland, India: Moranngam Khaling - Mo Naga (Headhunters’ Ink)
Philippines: Jonathan Cena & Jean Sioson (Katribu Tatu) | Lane Wilcken (lanewilcken.com)
Borneo: Herpianto Hendra (Traditional Dayak Iban tribe design, Folk Tattoo Space) | Limuel Estrop (Orangutan Studio, Kota Kinabalu) | Jeremy Lo (Kuching, Sarawak - Monkey Tattoo Studio) Taiwan: Cudjuy Patjidres (Paiwanese Tattoo)
British Columbia, Canada: Dion Kaszas (HFX Tattoo)
Inuit: Sarah Ayaqi Whalen-Lunn (Inuit hand poke and skinstitch practitioner - Ink Stitcher)
Hawai’i: Kamaliikūpono K. Hanohano
Aotearoa, New Zealand: Moko Smith (Uhi Tapu)
The voices of skin marking (tattoo) practitioners, pacific arts curators and Oceanic women that heal, are fathers, are mothers, that dance and wear their marks share their thoughts about the importance of the revival of marking skin.
Milly Koria-Grant - Vocalist, Healer - Mixed bloodlines, - Turongo Collective
Michaelyn Pokarop - Social Worker, Stretcher - Papua New Guinea - Melanesian Marks
Charlene Tedrow - Dancer, Tutor, Director - Samoa - Ura Tabu Productions
Graham Tipene - Designer and Ta Moko artist - Maori - Te Wheke Moko
Tyla Vaeau - Tattooist - Samoa
Georgie Williams - Tattooist - Maori - Georgie Williams on the road Worldwide
Tepaeru Ariki Lulu French - Medical Doctor, Dancer - Aitutaki Cook Islands - Polynesian Entertainers
Pat Morrow - Tattooist - Samoa - True Markings Studio
Julia Mage'au Gray, Ranu James - Original Tep Tok Cast
EDITED BY JULIA MAGE'AU GRAY, SOUND BY DAVID BRIDIE | MIXED BY ANDREW ROBINSON,
MUSICIANS: ROSIE EXCESS, PIUS WASI, MILLY GRANT-KORIA
DEEP THANKS TO OUR WHANAU,
RANU JAMES AND FAMILY, KATRINA SONTER,
AIRILEKE INGRAM, TANIA NUGENT, PAT MORROW
MAITREE PRODUCTIONS, VICE, VUNILAGI VOU, INTERNI DESIGN STUDIO,
COCONETTV, TURONGO COLLECTIVE, PASIFIKA FILM FEST
& ALL OF THE AMAZING PEOPLE WHO SHARED THEIR VOICES
Filmed through out Oceania:
Australia, Papua New Guinea, New Zealand, Hawai'i,