How Tattoos went from being Taboo to Mainstream: Tattoos, the little bits of permanent art that are poked into your skin by a little needle working at high speeds. So if that is all that they are, why does much of the society viewed tattoos as taboo? Tattoos began as a form of commemoration of victories and important events of a person’s life in ancient tribes and civilizations. However, as the Western World took over, tattoos were associated with rebellion and bad eggs and indeed it didn’t help that some tattoos became synonymous with street gangs and thugs. All in all, the tattoo culture fell from grace as a set norm of style and freedom of expression came to be known as normal while the art itself came to be associated with the worst specimens of society, such as sailors of questionable characters or thugs.
The return of the tattoo:
During the early 90s, an ongoing shift in people’s perspectives and the added influence of pop culture led to the comeback of Tattoos. Now, they adorned people who wanted to show a special preference to one particular TV show or celebrity whom they adored above all. Thus, pop culture rolled out the red carpet for tattoos to return to the scene. Tattoo artists who were once shunned now became celebrities and were provided with an opportunity to truly explore and develop their art. All this began of course, with a TV show called “Miami Ink” in 2005, a show that showed the operation and day-to-day life of the tattoo artists and even snippets of the lives of their customers. Done in a reality show format this elevated the status of both the artist and the art almost overnight. Through this, people got a sneak peek into the little underworld of art and showed how this form of art was nothing evil; nothing worth the taboo that was attached to its name. These TV shows opened up to people about the artworks which they could carry on their body; beautiful and eternal. This possibility intrigued people and drew them into tattoo parlours to see for themselves. Gradually, the art of tattooing rose in popularity and took hold of the teen population that was prone to impulsive decision-making and most welcoming of the shifting currents of fashion trends.
The situation now
Tattoos have consistently risen in popularity with people heralding it as a novel form of self-expression now unto forever. Of course as in any other generation there are people who are vociferous and venomous in their opposition, but as things stand now, tattoos have gripped the society in complete fascination as they choose this form of art to commemorate significant occurrences in their lives as well as for fun, or for choosing to display their likes and dislikes or sources of inspiration on their sleeves.
What is the future?
The art of tattooing has already joined hands with science and developed ways to incorporate benefits such as health indication or temperature indication into tattoos. So far these have been successful in forming a market of their own. Now that there are these added benefits to tattoos, hopefully, tattoos will again regain their position of importance as they once occupied in ancient societies.