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Artist's wild tattoos tell a story about rebirth & interconnectedness

Body modification — be it tattoos, piercings or implants — has become quite popular in recent years. Yet, decorating one’s body is a tradition that actually dates back thousands of years, whether for ceremonial purposes, rites of initiation, group affiliations or for enhancing one’s beauty. It can be a form of self-expression, worn conspicuously on the skin.

Aiming to tell imaginative stories about nature and her wild denizens, Portland-based artist Pony Reinhardt creates these incredible detailed inkings that incorporate an array of creatures and plants.

© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt

Punctuated with artistic flourishes and populated with stylized depictions of wildlife, Reinhardt’s skin art is an earthier yet cosmic departure from the stereotypical tattoos of yesterday proclaiming one’s love for “mom”.

Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt

She says that her “art is a cosmic cataclysm of the Ghastly Phantastic” — ranging from realistic portraits of wild creatures for children’s books, to more mutant-like, digitally coloured creations. But Reinhardt’s tattoos as seen here are quite lovely, depicting a dark-inked narrative about rebirth and the interconnected web of life, gently nudging us to rethink what the popular notion of a tattoo can be. If body art has long been a ceremonial vehicle of sorts, might we also re-imagine it as a vehicle to tell new stories about our vision of nature and our place in it? (We are a part of nature, and nature is a part of us.)

Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt
Pony Reinhardt© Pony Reinhardt

In addition to painting, stop-motion animation and ceramics, Reinhardt can be found creating these expressive works of tattoo art at Tenderfoot Studio in Portland. To see more, visit The Lost Fur.

[Via: My Modern Met]

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