Many cultures and tribes have been used, and is still used, in a ritual body painting and special events. Native of Australia, New Zealand, Pacific Islands and some parts of Africa are still using the painting as their ancestors thousands of years ago. A henna tattoo is still a popular practice in the Middle East and India. Some of the natives of South America still use huito, annatoo, or wet charcoal as a body and face decoration.
In the modern day body art there is some debate as to whether is should be considered art or not. There is the form where the painting covers a nude body. Then the other style is to paint on a part of the body while the rest of the body is clothed. Many use body painting to make a statement, for political or activists’ rights.
There are body painting events that are held worldwide for all artists both amateur and professional. The largest event held for body painting artists is the World Bodypainting Festival held in both Seeboden and Austria. Artists come from world wide to showcase their talent, armatures also come to see what others bring to the table and learn. There is also a lot of visitors who come to see the art and possible get some art done to their bodies. In the United States there are shows held in upstate New York, American Body Arts Festival, and then the US Bodypainting Festival in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Body painting has become more popular since the early 1990’s and is slowly becoming more accepted. There have been layouts and articles in many magazines that feature body painting. Some of these magazines are Playboy and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Addition. Another place that these paints are used in military groups worldwide.
There are many ways that these body paints are used around the world. Some are for art and fashion while others are used for job security purposes. The functions and uses for all these areas vary.