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Skull Ghost and Crab

 430,00 Excl. Taxes

Born in 1967, Marcus Kuhn got his first tattoo at the age of 16 by Thom de Vita, a leading figure of the American underground tattoo, in his apartment on the Lower East Side, during a period when tattooing was still officially banned in New York. Fascinated by this environment and its art, he went to his first convention in 1986 in New Orleans, where he met the young Filip Leu. Very impressed with his style, Marcus Kuhn decides in the late 80s to start an apprenticeship with Jonathan Shaw at Fun City in New York. Read more.

“In Japanese mythology a great warrior lost a battle at sea and instructed his samurai to commit sepuku or ritual suicide upon defeat. The samurai were washed away into the sea as their ship sank and the story is that the crabs began to appear with faces of samurai and skulls upon their shells. The image of the ghost of the slain haunted from the sea then became popular in the woodblock art of the Edo period and then naturally transferred into tattoo iconography. Most Japanese tattoo subject have a direct lineage from Edo period woodblock art such as Kunyioshi or Kyosai’s one. Woodblock art was the popular poster art of the day and was in the public domain seen by everyday Japanese, it usually depicted the themes of the kabuki theatre. Although the departure is from very traditional technique, the style of this painting is slightly more illustrative and inventive.”

Additional Information

Weight 1 kg
Dimensions 27.94 x 35.56 cm

Marcus Kuhn






Gouache on paper, Sumi ink, Watercolor


Unframed artwork


Original artwork

Certificate of authenticity