Saturday, April 25, 2009

Lazy Sunday Afternoon

The sun was shining and the bees buzzing and I started to read my book that I got for my birthday The Blue Tattoo: The Life of Olive Oatman .
"Within a decade, she was a white Indian with a chin tattoo, caught between cultures. "The Blue Tattoo" tells the harrowing story of this forgotten heroine of frontier America. Orphaned when her family was brutally killed by Yavapais Indians, Oatman lived as a slave to her captors for a year before being traded to the Mohave, who tattooed her face and raised her as their own."

It is interesting to see how tattoos once considered savage/or common are now accepted culturally and socially.
Indigenous Tattoos resurface after 95 years

Tattoo History Museum
Maori face design on a stone, maori call it Tā moko

This is" Sweetum's" who lives on a shelf in Yellow Springs somewhere.
I found the doll at a Garage Sale and painted her with black gesso, sponged white acrylic paint, black acrylic for the designs, and a final coat of resin.

So, err even Barbie has tattoos now, ahem!
Tattoo Barbie Project

Tattoo Doll Project


Lori Askeland said...

Hi, Jafagirl! I'm very interested in the book you're reading. "Captivity narratives" by white, usually women writers have been a prominent feature of US writing, which is somewhat ironic, since most of these took place during slavery and the mass displacement of native Americans.

In many native cultures, young children and women who were captured were not "enslaved" so much as adopted into the tribe, so I'm interested in what happened with your book's gal. Mary Jemison wrote a famous captivity narrative; she was adopted and fully assimilated into the tribe that kidnapped her; she had the chance to return to white society, but chose to remain with the Seneca people. She became a respected tribal elder and skilled negotiator. ( links to her narrative.)

Leigh Russell said...

Even Barbie has tattoos... ! I bet that model's selling well. It's about time Barbie stopped being so boring and became feisty.

Leigh Russell said...

I came over to thank you for your perceptive comments on my book cover but was so impressed by Barbie's tattoos that I completely forgot the purpose of my visit. Thank you. Please visit my blog again any time.

JafaBrit's Art said...

I am enjoying the book Lori because it reexamines her whole history and how her story was exploited by a religious man who wrote a book about it. My sense so far is that she wasn't unhappy with the mojave and didn't want to be traded (under duress) back. Once back she became a cause celebre and was exploited.
It is a fascinating book, not just that she was a captive but how she had to navigate the social/religious/moral/cultural mores once back in white society. I feel she was victimized twice.

Leanne Pizio said...

Love the tattoo doll! Amazing. And am truly interested in this book. I'll have pick it up before my trip.
And your lazy Sunday afternoon picture makes me want to curl up on the porch and take a nap in the sun