“My father’s desire to complete his journey as a Samoan Talking Chief by having his traditional Samoan tattoo carved onto his skin at the age of sixty-four, as well as my reluctant but liberating admission of who I am NOT, have inspired me to make this work. The work itself is broken up into four sections, each of which is based on a traditional symbol of the Samoan tattoo known as the Pe’a. The Pe’a wraps itself around the male’s body from the lower torso to below the knees and takes in everything in between.” – Neil Ieremia
Surface examines how a new cultural journey evolves and ripens. The dancers portray the lines, ink, tools, symbols and clusters of design found in the traditional Samoan art of Tatau (Samoan Tattoo). They play more a metaphysical and mythological role in the work. Not until the dancers awake at the end of the show from what would seem like a dream state do we recognise their true humanism as they thoughtfully and carefully celebrate an invisible tattoo, which has always been there.
Surface resounds to the rhythm of the tattoo tools as well as pulsating original music by Neil Ieremia, Woodcut Productions and Phil Dadson.
Surface is a major new work that is as masterful as it is metaphorical. (It is) an exciting visual experience, rich in energy, texture and magic