"Marked" airs Tonight on History Channel
Mario Barth tattoos rapper Jim Jones
Tonight at 9PM Eastern time, the History Channel will premier a new six-part tattoo series called Marked, which "will explore the world of tattoos belonging to the intense modern day tribes that operate at the edges of society, including 1% motorcycle clubs, hardcore prisons, urban gangs and street culture."
I saw your eyes rolling over yet another tattoo show, but I'm actually gonna sit down and watch this one because it's produced by veteran tattooist Mario Barth and director Billy Burke, who's first collaboration Under The Skin -- a film on underground Japanese tattooing and surrounding rituals -- won numerous awards for Best Documentary. A clip from the documentary is below. [You can order the DVD online here.]
Like Under the Skin, tattoo's fringe culture is explored, including initiation rights, the meaning behind tattoo symbols, technique and history. It seems like it will take Gangland, another History channel show, further by delving into the tattoo culture of gangs. I'm particularly interested in how certain groups use tattooing as bonding, marks of hierarchy as well as belonging, and personal story telling, so it looks like a TV night for Brian and I this eve.
If you watch it tonight as well, feel free to post your thoughts in the comments section.
For more on Mario, check his blog, where he recently posted pics of Jim Jones' backpiece that he's working on.