The art of tattoo making has been associated with criminals in many countries. The gang members wore them as symbol of pride and as a mark of identity which proved their allegiance to a particular group. Among the criminal tattoos, Russian prison tattoos hold a rich history full of intriguing facts. The practice of prisoners getting their body parts carved with tattoos is quite old and dates back to the times of 1920s and 30s. A lot of research has been also done on these Russian prison tattoos which has yielded interesting facts about the various facets of the life of criminals.
The Russian prison tattoos include varied symbols like church, crucifix, cats, tigers, snakes, skulls, eyes, barbed wire, etc.
All of these are some or in other way related to the past and future of the prisoners. For example, the number of church domes indicates the number of prison terms or the years of sentence the prisoner has served. Similarly, the barbs on the wire are a symbol of prison term in years. Here we have compiled a collection of 25 Russian prison tattoos that show the hardened men in their different tattoos. Take a look.
This tattoo design has an amazing artistic look and makes for an attractive piece.
Borne The Pain
Travis Barker with torso and hands carved with multiple images placed at some distance to give a neat look.
The image of Stalin carved with a castle on the back signifies the love of the prisoner for the political leader.
Prisoner Holy Tattoo
This tattoo is a symbol that stands for the prisoner has been a criminal from his early years.
Prisoner with full body tattoo, holding a cigarette in his mouth, looks daring.
This prisoner wearing a bear along with other images on the back side of his palm seems to be an animal lover.
Having spent a large part of his life in prison, the old man had his tattoos as an instrument of amusement.
This lettering sitting on the back side of the palm typifies the guts and daring attitude of the prisoner.
The number of domes carved on the chest represent the number of prison terms or the years of sentence the prisoner has to serve.
Stars tattooed on knees of this prisoner points to the fact that he bows before no authority.
This prisoner with torso and arms bearing many designs and images looks sad about his present state.
The outlines of this full frontal tattoo design look blurred due to lack of proper equipment in prison.
The barbed wire tattoo on the forehead indicates towards the prison term in years.
The Transparent Man
This prisoner is trustworthy and an escape artist as he is sporting a butterfly on his arm.
Lost Finger Prisoner
This prisoner with an animal image on the side of his chest lost his index finger in a criminal accident.
Seducing Tattoo Art
The pornographic images on the torso and hands indicate the failure of the prisoner to pay a gambling debt.
Cool images of girls carved on the chest indicate that the prisoner might have had many women in his life.
So Many Men
The faces of criminals etched on the chest and belly looks like an album created on the torso.
Down With Communists
The snake creeping on the chest is a sign of protest towards the communist party.
United Tattoo Print
These three criminals standing together with different tattoo designs on their bodies make for an interesting portrait.
This man has all possible kinds of symbols on his body and looks like a veteran criminal.
The crown perched above the cross is a symbol that the prisoner is a leader of the gang of thieves.
The sun image on the hand signifies a desire to be set free from the prison.
The cupid arrows etched on both sides of the chest point towards the loving side of this prisoner.
The flying angels and Jesus, carved on the front, exudes a sacred feel to the onlookers.