A Basque tribute in body art

If you’ve never seen the man, he is down-right impressive. John Ochandorena Descarga, better known as simply Johnny O, is a walking tribute to the Basques, their culture, their history, and his ancestry.  With two arm sleaves, tats up and down his legs and across his chest, Johnny definitely stands out in a crowd.  I had the pleasure of meeting Johnny about 14 years ago at a small festival held in Vancouver, British Columbia, where Gauden Bat, the dance group Johnny was a part of, performed.  Maybe a little intimidating at first, due to the abundance of ink on his body, he was a great guy.  It was a great event overall.

Johnny has sent photos of all of the work he has had done, a project that continues to evolve, most recently including the footprints of his daughter, right in the middle of his chest!  Because of the number of photos, I’ve created a separate gallery for Johnny’s tattoos, and he’s given explanations for each one, with photos from multiple perspectives of each arm and leg.

While such ink is not for everyone, it is still a wonder what Johnny has done.  I look forward to seeing what he comes up with next!

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2 thoughts on “A Basque tribute in body art”

  1. I know Johnny O personaly and yes he is a good guy. His tats are simply amazing.It all started with a tribute to his mom and dad and just grew from there.I asked him how bad it hurt while getting them to which he replied ; it was nothing compared to the pain he went thru when he lost his mom.Can’t argue that I know the pain he speaks of.If you ask me those are not tats those are works of art.

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