A friend was kind enough to send me the following photo and story..

“These days in Turkey, if you tell someone that you want to have a tattoo they think you are nothing but a punk! But this photo (should) show them tattooing is an art and part of our culture.”

This is the oldest tattoo I have ever seen. She is a friend’s grandma and still very proud of carrying it!”

21 thoughts on “Supergran!

  1. this post is lovely!
    thats how i want to be, years from now. proud to display my beautifully faded ink!
    its sad when people look down upon old, faded tattoos… i think its neet how they gradually become more attuned to your body, its like they become even more a part of who you are.

  2. wow. just wow. amazing! yeah, i like it. but i dissagree with no.3 (sorry) i just don’t think it should be touched up, i mean the original ink looks amazing. but in the end, it’s up to granma if she wants to keep it old or get it re-done.. it’s her flesh and her ink :)

  3. Excellent. When ever I get the “but will you still want that when you’re old and wrinkly” question, I think of people like this woman, and have to respond with a resounding, “Hell yeah!”

  4. I love this picture, this is how tattoos should be, still proud of them until you are getting on in life. Loverly ^_^

  5. I was wondering that, during the soccer World Championship actually: a lot of the players on the Turkish team had quite a lot of ink (some nice stuff, too, on some at least). Since Turkey is traditionally a Muslim country, I was wondering what tattooing is viewed like there – because as far as i know, most Islamic teachings reject tattoos.
    Any input? I’m curious.

  6. In most touristic and major cities of Turkey, muslims are almost always ok with it. I don’t know about the eastern parts however the worst reaction i got is from a german guy couse my tattoo resembles a holocaust jewish forearm tattoo.

    Islam rejects tattoos on two perspectives; You need to clean your whole body in the act of ghusl (abdest). Since ink is under the skin this one is controversial. The other one is that you can’t harm yourself. I think this is also controversial becouse if ink makes you happy (or body mod in that matter) it’s ok. Couse even though you are harming your body temporary, you are getting something that makes you happy which is good for the mind in a way.

  7. This tattoo is about the character, not the quality. This is great. This is one of the reason why I frequent Modblog.

  8. Seeing this just made me smile. I love how deeply embedded tattooing is in so many cultures, and I love the link my tattoos give me all of those who have gotten them before me, through choice, through ritual, for status, ect… Go Grandma:)

  9. A friend of mine told me a story a few days ago. An elderly woman walked into her shop wearing a short-sleeved shirt, and had several faded tattoos showing. Being the curious wee bunny she is, my friend had to ask if she regretted having those tattoos at her age. The woman’s response: “Not a chance.” It’s people like that and this woman here who make me extra proud to be tattooed

  10. The simplicity makes it even more gorgeous…my 81 year old grand father has some real intricate work he had when he was a sailor back in the day…i remember when 15 years ago when i was a wee bonnie lass they still looked great, but then the small details in this awesome ship tatt meshed together in a dark blob… the anchor and star he has still looks awesome and they’re my favorite. any hoo, simple designs are nice!

  11. This is a gorgeous example of the ‘harquus’ designs women in the Middle East and North Africa have been marking each other with for centuries. The patterns can represent anyhting from tribal affiliation to personal taste. It is sadly dying out as a custom as young women strive to be seen as cosmopolitan and Western. There has been some interest in preserving the patterns used, but I don’t know if anyone will be able to move fast enough to keep all this wisdom alive before the last wearers and artists die. A beatiful, feminine tradition.

  12. LillyTree, i very much agree with you…this needs to be documented, if it hasnt already, before its too late!
    absolutely beautiful, i love this kind of stuff!

  13. well, it is still a part of tradition in the east and southeast regions of turkey.. i dont know why they freak out when they see someone tattooed :P

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