The Beautiful Restorative Art of Mastectomy Tattoos

mastectomy tattoos

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Here’s how artists are using ink to heal souls with mastectomy tattoos. Have you ever stood in the cosmetics aisle staring at the rows upon rows of bottles, jars, compacts and powders with names like “buff beige” and “sienna,” wondering whether you’re more of an olive or if the light in here is just weird? This was going to be the time you remembered to write down the number on the last bottle you bought and used even though it was off by a shade, so that you would remember to buy the one just a step darker / lighter / warmer / cooler. But you forgot again, and now you’re wondering what color you even are. Now ask yourself: what color are my areolas? Yes, seriously. Like foundation, temporary areola tattoos are sold in shades from peachy “cream” to a deep-brown “mahogany.” Actually,        …read more

The Sacred Art of Maori Tattoos

Maori tattoos

Maori tattoos connect the indigenous people of New Zealand to their sacred heritage and attract the world to their ancient artistic expression. Maori, indigenous people of New Zealand, exhibit a sacred Polynesian form of body art known as tā moko, commonly referred to as Maori tattoos. Because Maori perceive the head as the most sacred part of the body, the facial tattoo is the most common. Arch shapes and coil-like patterns cover the whole face as “a form of identification, rank, genealogy, tribal history, eligibility to marry, and marks of beauty or ferocity and much more,” according to Tahaa: Ta Moko Studio and Maori Arts Gallery. Most Maori tattoos are made up of repeating patterns and symbols, commonly used as background decoration. Superficially, these patterns seem to be merely geometric designs, but most have a specific meaning. While tā moko most recognizably appear on the face, other parts of the        …read more

Artists Transforming Weapons into Powerful Messages of Nonviolence


In honor of Gandhi’s birthday and International Day of Nonviolence, check out these incredible works of art promoting peace around the world. On October 2, the birthday of nonviolence philosophy activist Mahatma Gandhi, the United Nations commemorates International Day of Nonviolence. It is meant to reaffirm the universal desire for a nonviolent existence and a culture of peace, tolerance and understanding. The nonviolence philosophy started by Gandhi is continuously present in the art world, as artists of various backgrounds and disciplines create works promoting pacifism and peace. For International Day of Nonviolence, here’s a look at seven artists who use the weapons of war and conflict to create impactful art, thus transforming their associated narrative. 1. Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd’s ‘Nonviolence’ Sculpture In 1980, singer, songwriter and peace activist John Lennon was shot and killed outside his New York City home. To honor Lennon and his vision of a peaceful world,        …read more