There has been some talk going around the internet-sphere in Malaysia lately about tattoos, following the controversial 2019 Tattoo Malaysia Expo which took place recently.
Perhaps it was a coincidence or maybe just weird timing, but Malaysia’s very own Hollywood star, Henry Golding, also recently tweeted about his tattoos.
The story behind 'Bunga Terung'
“For all the Iban around the world, the "Bunga Terung" is a part of our identity... Be proud of your history,” he tweeted while referring to a thread about Iban tattoos.
Just to jog your memory, Golding was born in Sarawak to British-Malaysian parents, and he is of Ibanese heritage.
He has several tattoos, and the ones on his shoulder are of the Bunga Terung motif.
According to Maclean Patrick, for an Iban man, the 'bunga terung' was the first tattoo he got as it signifies a coming of age.
“This motif is only for men. After that it will aid you on your 'berjalai' or walk. For an Iban to 'Berjalai' means to travel and gain new knowledge and experiences.”
“The 'Bunga Terung' identifies the person as an Iban and back in the warring times this was important.”
A few years ago, Henry starred in a six-part docu-series titled ‘Surviving Borneo’ documenting his Iban heritage including his bejalai
The 32-year-old actor’s latest film ‘Last Christmas’ is currently in theatres and he’s slated to star in Guy Ritchie’s latest film ‘The Gentleman’ premiering in 2020.