Ignorant Tattoo, a style to break rules

A very controversial tattoo style


Simple, imperfect lines, misspelt words and tattoos that do not follow the rules. This is a summary of the Ignorant Tattoo, a tattoo style that is becoming a trend.

This style of tattoos has a very close relationship with urban art and is taken as a tribute to the so-called “primitive graffiti” that emerged in NY in the 90s.

One of his motivations was to maintain a certain “purity and ingenuity”, making the designs appear to be made by children and not by experienced adults.

What is interesting here is the search for the bases of drawing as a completely free form of expression, just like infants do.

One of the best-known graffiti artists in this genre is FUZI, who says it was something he started deliberately to break the rules.

As a protest against standardization, this new style is imposed as an escape from any impositions.

The point was to write and draw whatever and however it came out. But this made many uncomfortable, and opposing opinions and criticisms were not long in coming.

Do you want to know more? Keep reading!

Ignorant tattoos?

Well, the term may be scary, but it's not that literal. As we mentioned before, motivation is behind its name.

This tattoo style is rather simple in design, and is related to minimalism as they share some similarities, such as the fact that they are usually small tattoos with few strokes.

However, we can’t compare them with Fine-Line tattoos. As we mentioned in the article about Minimalism: Fine-Line tattoos, in Minimalism perfection is key, whereas in the Ignorant tattoo what matters is total untidiness.

Returning to the original impulse of graffiti, the tattooists who dedicate themselves to the Ignorant style believe that it is not just about tattoos, but about wearing a bit of urban art on the body.

Spontaneity when tattooing, including mistakes, is what really matters in this style.

But these are not inexperienced tattoo artists, as one might think. These tattoos are even made by professionals who are interested in seeking the representation of urban and unusual elements, as a rebellious and disruptive movement.

Criticism of the Ignorant Style

As we anticipated, one of the artists who promoted this style was graffiti artist Fuzi, who also dedicates his time to the world of tattooing.

In 2012, his name was echoed on all social networks when Scarlett Johansson made public a tattoo and his author.

It was a lucky horseshoe that naturally had many imperfections. This was the central point when the actress's fans began criticism and the artist remained in the eye of the storm.

However, he clarified that he is a plastic artist and not exclusively a tattoo artist. Which doesn't take away the fact that this style is actually intended to be flawed.

Paradoxically, this boosted the popularity of the Ignorant Tattoo.

The point is in the discussion that arises around the different positions regarding what can be considered a 'worthy' tattoo and what is not.

The main point in this style is reluctance and the exaggerated simplicity, which saves resources to the maximum, accompanied by some poorly written phrases or words.

It is for this reason that they have earned criticism from many, and even censored by the most conservative public.

However, more and more tattoo artists and clients are adding this style to their designs. Some people understand them as a protest, like in graffiti, and not as an offence to traditional tattooing.

One of the most striking elements is that the drawings at first glance seem made by children, but with some kind of irony and uncomfortable and absurd features, which is part of the game.

To tattoo or not to tattoo an Ignorant tattoo, that is the question

Whether these types of tattoos should continue to be done or not is still discussed. For some more conventional tattoo artists, this style should not exist, since they take it as a mockery, and they even see an offence to their work.

But this position becomes more controversial when professionals decide to do them. It is no longer about thinking that they are tattoos made only by beginners. Then, what happens?

Despite the dispute, this style is growing more and more, especially among young people. The question is if this will only be a trend that will disappear in a few years, or if it is here to stay. Currently, it looks like the second option.

As you can see, when it comes to styles, tattooing never stops innovating. There are already more than 40, including classics and their derivatives.

Curious to learn more techniques that will help you develop your personal style? Take a look at our professional tattoo courses.