Nowadays we se people on the street being a canvas of art themselves, having amazing paintings, portraits, caricatures, on their arms, legs, chest and sometimes face. Today tattoos are a true form of art, in which tattoo artist take the time to create art on people’s bodies. Today at Shirts House we dedicate our designs to this great form of body art.
The tattoo is something that we love, many inevitably look when we see one and are hypnotized with the traces of their design, while others proudly wear them as a reminder to that loved one that is no longer there or to reaffirm their convictions. But the history of the tattoo was not simple, to get to have this perception had to spend centuries and break stigmas that accompanied them in different times.
The history we know goes back to the Stone Age. In 1991 a hunter from the Neolithic era was found on a glacier; his back and knees were tattooed. Before the hunter's mummy was discovered, the oldest tattooed person was the Egyptian priestess Amunet worshiper of Hathor, goddess of love and fertility. In the prehistoric cave of Aurignac were found small pointed bones that are believed to have been used for tattooing. The ancient inhabitants of Polynesia were the first to record motifs on their skin. The men were tattooed to such an extent that there was not a piece of bare skin on their body. Polynesia is the place that has the reputation of the most artistic tattoo in the ancient world, characterized by geometric figures. In fact the term "tattoo" (tatoo in English, pronounced tatú) has a Polynesian origin. More specifically in the Polynesian word "ta" which means to strike or in the expression "tau-tau" used to speak of the clash between two bones.
In their tattooed spirals the Maori thought they could catch the cosmic energy. If the deceased had no protective tattoos the sorceress would eat the eyeballs, the soul would be blind and could not find the way to immortality. Therefore, if someone died without a tattoo, the Maori tattooed the corpse.
In the Marquesas Islands "a body without a tattoo was a stupid body". It had a deep sexual erotic meaning. The women had their fingers and ears tattooed with very thin drawings and obscene symbols on the vulva. Men tattooed their entire body, nose, eyelids, tongue and scalp. But it also had a religious magical meaning because for them the tattooed skin was an armor of physical and spiritual protection. When one of these men died, his women removed his skin, because the guardian of paradise disliked tattoos. Without traces of tattoo, he returned to the state of purity, could be buried in sacred ground and his spirit could rise to paradise.
From the last decades, in most cultures tattoos have ceased to have negative meanings and are taboo to become an almost fundamental part of fashion. Great personalities proudly carry their tattoos and good tattooists are in the same orbit as painters and other visual artists.
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