Perhaps one of the top ten most iconic tattoo designs in contemporary history, spider web tattoos have become a staple within the portfolio of many a tattooist. Most known for its connection to prison culture, these pieces actually have a wealth of symbolism attached to them. In this collection of spider web tattoos we tried to bring to you some old school specialities, as well as some ink that puts a new spin on these vintage design. We'll also talk a bit about what this ink can mean for different people, and why it continues to be one of the most popular pieces out there.
As you probably already know, spider web tattoos have origins within prison culture. Right behind the famed tear drop tattoo, the web is popular for symbolizing being trapped in a system of mass incarceration. Unfortunately, the design also has ties to white supremacy, but thankfully this negative connotation is easing off thanks to the beauty, and meaning of the icon, as well as the progressive philosophies of many tattooists who are reclaiming concepts and spinning them with more positive light. This is important, especially due to the fact that many ancient symbols have been hijacked by hate groups....the spider web is no different. In Native American culture, the spider web is linked to dream catchers, and the legend of the Spider Woman who would weave webs around newborns to protect them from all that is evil. What a lovely sentiment!
Like many symbols in tattoo culture, the spider web tattoo has dual meanings...and you should think about that before getting inked. However, when it comes down to it, it's your body, and your choice! Spider web tattoos are really cool, and if done by the right artists, a piece that you'll cherish for a long time to come.