The body as a canvas

We believe that similar to beauty, the symbolisation of a tattoo lies in the eyes and mind of the beholder. Whether it be a tattoo on a spontaneous whim or a tattoo that represents a special meaning, there are numerous people who find skin art offensive. Many react by questioning the relevance that their body modifications hold to others, but contemporary society allows others to delve into decisions that do not concern them.

We assert that it is the narrow-mindedness of people that causes them to discriminate. While everyone is entitled to an opinion, an opinion which you hold little experience of can be different.

A recent graduate of a culinary school in Durban was surprised to view her class yearbook and discover that her tattoo on her arm had been airbrushed out. When she questioned this, she was informed that it may appear as offensive if customers saw this photograph, although she was never requested to conceal during working hours. It is evident that the school had chosen to represent her inaccurately, which simultaneously leaves little room for self-expression.

Skin art has become increasingly popular over the years.  There is reason to believe that within the next few years, the only issue preventing someone from getting ‘inked’ would be the fear of ink poisoning or needles.

There will always remain a handful of professions which skin art is suited for, whereas simultaneously, there will be always be those who frown upon it. We perceive this as accurate in numerous communities, cultures, religions and areas.

There will always be people who disagree with tattoos as a form of self-expression. We are aware that there are several beautiful forms of self-expression which are frowned upon. No matter what decision is made, it will be a issue in another’s reality. This is why we believe that it is essential to understand that self-expression and body modifications are intended for the self, and no other individual has the right to judge or discriminate against them.

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Khinali
Khinali is a student at Rhodes University currently studying Journalism. She considers herself an activist and wishes to one day change the lives of those who have yet to think out of the box and take an alternative look at the world we live in. She is an avid lover of the Beatles, dogs and anything purple.

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