Mayan Backpiece

I really like this backpiece by Munpie in Antwerp, Belgium. If I’ve misidentified it and it’s Incan or Aztec, someone please correct me by the way.


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About Shannon Larratt

Shannon Larratt is the founder of BME (1994) and its former editor and publisher. After a four year hiatus between 2008 and 2012, Shannon is back adding his commentary to ModBlog. It should be noted that any comments in these entries are the opinion of Shannon Larratt and may or may not be shared by LLC or the other staff or members of BME. Entry text Copyright © Shannon Larratt. Reproduced under license by LLC. Pictures may be copyright to their respective owners. You can also find Shannon at Zentastic or on Facebook.

30 thoughts on “Mayan Backpiece

  1. Wow, that is absolutely beautiful. I hope that when I get around to getting my backpiece, it turns out as amazing as that.

  2. gorgeous and intricate work – the sleeves go well (not sure if they were supposed to originally or not)

    looks great and very sexy

  3. Your right Shannon… it is Maya in nature. The iconography is distinctly Maya, although it has been stylised somewhat. One glyph that i can see can be translated to “The scattering of blood (bloodletting ritual)”. Its a beautiful piece.

  4. What Quaid said – although it’s super-duper stylized (and not really in the Maya style, IMVHO – albeit definitely with the iconography.) Hand-fish is definitely the good ol’ blood-sacrifice glyph. Can’t really make out the other ones, though – and the fact that he’s holding lightning is very strange.

  5. This is my fav. tattoo I have ever seen on modblog….. His sleeves are awesome also… beautiful tattoos!!! :)

  6. It is def. Central American Mayan/Aztec… Incan art has different qualities it tends to be a little more rustic and primitive than the central american cultures…. It is an amazing back piece!

  7. judging from some little details and specially how face is designed and other things i am able to say it’s almost 100% a mayan sculpture. incaic ones where more simpler, and aztec where from before mayans and have some differences on the design….nice tat!!!

  8. Hi thanks to everyone for the comments and just to tell you that yes i’m really proud of my backpiece(Munpie is really an awesome artist!),but we planned to add some black ink to the background!… that will be a lot more graphic,we tried it on a picture and it turned really well!… That idea of the black background is not from me or either from Munpie,it’s from another tattoo artist Mike who is tattooing in Zurich(i think!!!),so thanks to him!… and you now it now but yes once again it’s Maya and all the glyphes where chose for the aesthetic and not the meaning so don’t really try to understand it!They are not making any real sentences!

  9. No it taken from a book, Munpie the artist is an old friend, and he freehanded the image before tattooing and it is based on an image on a clay vase…so its a one of a kind..excellent composition and execution.

  10. I’m getting a backpiece similar to this very soon and I’ve been looking everywhere for some more information on this piece

  11. I know I’m a little late to the discussion, but the diety is most likely Chaac, the god of rain and thunder. He corresponds to the later, Aztec deity Tlaloc.

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