A staggering amount of brilliant Irezumi is coming out every day, so we decided to slow down for a moment and admire some of the best Japanese tattoos that we’ve seen this week. In this hand-picked selection, there are examples of traditional bodysuits and contemporary sleeves, work done by tebori and tattoo machine, as well as full color compositions and black and grey.
Rodrigo Melo, who also does beautiful paintings on cuts of wood, recently unveiled an epic back-piece featuring one of the 108 heroes of the Suikoden. Several artists also produced awe-inspiring depictions of religious figures and deities, including Luca Ortis’ Buddha and Artemy Neumoin’s Fudo Myoo.
Lots of superb tattoos of mythological Japanese creatures also cropped up this week. BaekWoon showed off a pair of dueling dragons, Johan Svahn posted a fearsome foo dog, Mike Rubendall dug up one of his hannya masks from his back catalogue, and Horimoto, the inventor of monmon cats, put the finishing touches on a sleeve of a Nue. The kitsune shapeshifting into a human by Regino Gonzalez is one of the best back-pieces we’ve seen in a good while.
To be astounded by more Japanese masterpieces, follow all of these artists on Instagram. If you’re thinking about starting an epic back-piece, bodysuit, or pair of sleeves of your own soon, we recommend that you get in touch with one of these Irezumi extraordinaires to do it.