Dallas Documentary Maker’s “Tattoo Uprising” is Among DocuFest’s Offerings

Dallas VideoFest's third annual DocuFest starts today and runs through Sunday at the Angelika Film Center. Among the documentaries scheduled is "Tattoo Uprising," made by local filmmaker, photographer, and author Alan Governar.

documentary festival

The 32nd annual Dallas VideoFest is now presenting its third annual DocuFest, featuring dozens of independent documentary films and videos from around the world.

DocuFest starts today and runs through Sunday at the Angelika Film Center on Mockingbird Lane in Dallas. The films all tell meaningful life stories that both educate and entertain audiences.

“Sophisticated technology that lives in the palm of our hand has made shooting high-quality documentaries easier so filmmakers can follow people, movements and injustices in a dynamic, powerful and poetic manner,” Bart Weiss, founder and artistic director of Dallas VideoFest, said in a statement.

Among the documentaries scheduled is “Tattoo Uprising,” a 75-minute film by Dallas filmmaker, photographer, and author Alan Governar.

Must see: “Tattoo Uprising”

“Tattoo Uprising” is an overview of tattooing, from biblical references and early Christian practice to the voyages of Capt. James Cook and the ever-evolving trends of Western society.

At its debut, the film is nearly 40 years in the making. Govenar began work in 1980 while finishing his other documentary, “Stoney Knows How.”

Released in 1981, “Stoney Knows How” tells the story of a circus and carnival sideshow tattoo artist. It once won an Outstanding Film of the Year at the London Film Festival.

“Tattoo Uprising” features what some of the most extraordinary people in the tattoo world: Ed Hardy, Stoney St. Clair, Cynthia Witkin, and Calamity Jane. There’s also an appearance from filmmaker Werner Herzog, with a rare glimpse at his Ed Hardy tattoo.

“Tattoo Uprising” was shot, in part, by the late filmmaker Les Blank, who also will make it on-screen.

Governar and his wife, Kaleta Doolin, are well known the East Dallas area for their conversion of the old Fire Station No. 16 into a community arts center, museum, and studio called 5501 Columbia Art Center. The couple bought the property in 1991 when it served as a Mexican Mennonite church, according to an article in the Lakewood Advocate.

The property is used to exhibit photography, paintings, and sculptures. Adjacent properties acquired by the couple later became the Texas African American Photography Archive, which houses images taken from 1840 to 2000. Doolin is also credited with creating the Art in the Community Program that has space for Aguila Azteca, a boxing gym for neighborhood youth.

For ticket information and a schedule of DocuFest, go here.

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