One of the most enthralling images of the East, geisha tattoos are an homage to the beautiful women who are part of an important cultural and historical Japanese asset. The word "geisha" is made up of two kanji, that's the Japanese alphabet. One of them means "arts" and the other is "person" or "doer"....put them together and you have someone who perfectly inhabits a world full of music, song, and dance; a physical embodiment of living creatively in each sacred ritualistic moment. We think these particular pieces will capture your heart, and make you long for far away places...
In the early history of Japan, there were female performers who were misplaced by feudal struggles in the 600's. Wandering from town to town, they provided entertainment to the elite. Later, in Kyoto, the geisha district popped up due to the immense popularity of the beauty, skills, and entertainment of the geisha. If you're lucky enough, even still you can find maikos, geisha apprentices, and geishas in Gion! Or, if you want to take a different route, we suggest checking out a Japanese tattoo studio and getting your very own geisha tattoo. At least that way you can take her home with you!
All jokes aside, the traditions, artistry, and culture of the geisha is one to be highly respected. It takes much training to become one of those beautiful women. Do not forget, these are not sexual playthings...a misunderstanding in the West through ignorance and experiences with oiran, women who were not only performers and trend setters, but sexual companions. Their histories are intertwined, but, as with most ancient cultures, things evolve and change over time...these geisha tattoos are a piece of that: a visual emblem of respect for the beauty and arts cultivated by an incredibly talented people in a marvelous country.
If you want to know more about the history, imagery, legality and artists of Japanese Tattoos, be sure to check out our guide right here.