The Marquesan tattoo holds deep cultural symbolism and meaning for those native to the Marquesas Islands in French Polynesia. These ancient blackwork tattoos signify status, rank, and coming-of-age rituals. Bold geometric shapes and motifs like turtles, lizards, sharks, and ocean waves characterize the distinctive Marquesan style. Traditionally tattooed on the body from mid-torso to knees, Marquesan tattoos showcase strength, courage, and pride. An authentic revival Marquesan tattoo honors this sacred Polynesian tradition.
When it comes to placement, Marquesan tattoos are traditionally done as extensive body suits covering the torso, arms, and legs. For a contemporary take, smaller Marquesan designs can be inked on the shoulders, calves, biceps, or forearms. Due to their size and intricacy, expect a Marquesan tattoo to be on the pricier side, with costs starting around $150 per hour.
Curious to see Marquesan tattoo ideas and inspiration? Scroll down to check out 30 amazing Marquesan tattoo designs with their meanings. From fierce sharks to symbolic turtles, explore the depth and dimension of Marquesan ink.
1. Tree of Life Marquesan Tattoo
With every glance at your arm, you’ll feel a deep connection to nature. This breathtaking “Tree of Life” inspired Marquesan tattoo is ready to make you feel like this.
2. Spearhead Marquesan Tattoo
This design is created with two spearhead patterns! It’s like the superstar of the whole design, representing the wearer’s fierceness and strength. Two spearhead patterns are divided by a thick line.
3. Cross Marquesan Tattoo
Marquesan designs are like magic with their steady arches and lines forming a cross! The bold cross lines, mixed with delicate ones around it, will look stunning on your forearm.
4. Tribal Marquesan Shoulder Tattoo
That shoulder tattoo is totally amazing! It’s like a mix of Marquesan vibes, with those intricate shark teeth, sharp spearhead patterns, and those cool enatas all coming together to create a masterpiece! Whoever got this ink is rocking some serious style!
5. Blackwork Tiki Face Marquesan Tattoo
In the calf, there’s a tiki face tattoo. The face is adorned with various geometric stripes all around. It’s quite a large and fabulous Marquesan tattoo!
6. Full Arm Marquesan Tattoo
Let us tell you about this incredible Marquesan tattoo, which is made up of shark teeth and enacts placed in circles. The design starts from the shoulder and stretches out to the wrist. Imagine the fierce power of shark teeth combined with the harmony of circles in one awesome design.
7. Marquesan Lizard Arm Tattoo
A cool Marquesan tribal lizard tattoo has been inked on the upper arm. In Polynesian myths, Gods and little spirits would sometimes pop up before humans in the form of lizards, so they are important for Marquesan people, too.
8. Tiki Marquesan Shoulder Tattoo
On the shoulder, there’s a cool tiki face tattoo. Tiki figures are like these mystical semi-gods. And all around it, there’s this groovy tribal art that adds even more beauty. It’s like a little piece of paradise right there on the shoulder!
9. Cross and Mandala Marquesan Tattoo
A beautiful cross is placed inside a mesmerizing mandala. In this Marquesan tattoo, it’s like ancient tribal vibes are combined with spiritual elegance. Let’s blend the best of both worlds!
10. Forearm Marquesan Tattoo
How about checking out an awesome Marquesan tribal tattoo right on your forearm? It’s got both spearhead and intricate shark teeth designs. It’ll cover just the lower part of your arm, and it looks super cool!
11. Sleeve Marquesan Tattoo
This awesome design begins at the top shoulder and flows down to the wrist! It’s got some seriously bold and dark parts, but also cute miniature Polynesian symbols hidden in there.
12. Shark Marquesan Back Shoulder Tattoo
Here is a super cool tribal-style Marquesan shark tattoo on the back shoulder! It’s like a fearless ocean guardian ready to make a splash whenever you show it off.
13. Elephant Marquesan Thigh Tattoo
You’ll only see the elephant’s face, delicately etched with thin lines in this thigh tattoo! Within the elephant’s face, there are various tribal motifs. Give it a try.
14. Inner Arm Marquesan Tattoo
Looking for an awesome Marquesan tattoo with intricate motifs? This could be a fantastic choice! Various Polynesian symbols are beautifully placed on the inner arm. Cool, right?
15. Floral Marquesan Tattoo
When it comes to Marquesan tattoos, there are a bunch of options for floral designs. The top picks are hibiscus and lotus flowers. Combine it with ocean waves, just like in this arm tattoo.
16. Sugar Skull Marquesan Tattoo
Want a cool tattoo idea? How about a sugar skull with intricate lines? Consider a sugar skull which is a traditional Mexican skull-shaped candy for your new Marquesan tattoo.
17. Tribal Marquesan Upper Arm Tattoo
Wanna go for an ancient arm decoration for your next tattoo? These stunning, circular designs begin from a central point and gracefully expand with layers of profound symbols, each carrying its own unique significance.
18. Half Sleeve Marquesan Tattoo
Age is just a number, and it’s never too late for a tribal tattoo! Embrace those bold designs that cover your upper arm, starting from the chest with intricate motifs. Give it a shot to feel as fierce as the Marquesan warriors!
19. Shark Teeth Marquesan Tattoo
This crazy combo of shark teeth rock! Sharks are like, one of the top choices for aumakua to show up to us humans. They’re all about protection and strength. As well as simple ones, complex shark teeth are also placed.
20. Leg Sleeve Marquesan Tattoo
Get these sleek black ink swirls from thighs to ankles for stunning legs! The delicate lines and shading takes this Marquesan tattoo to a different level. Your strong leg muscles will help with the pain, and it’ll leave folks in awe!
21. Marquesan Shell Arm Tattoo
How about getting Marquesan shell tattoos? They can be seashells or turtle shells, with the latter being extra special due to their cultural importance! Get this tattoo with your partner and shine out together!
22. Marquesan Tiki Leg Tattoo
This leg tattoo features a Marquesan Tiki symbol, embodying Polynesian culture and spirituality. Incorporating hands, eyes, and vertical lines, it combines protection, insight, and a connection to nature like a piece of art.
23. Geometric Marquesan Head Tattoo
This tribal tattoo on half of the head has strips that start from the front and extend towards the back, each with unique designs. Give it a try.
24. Ocean Marquesan Shouder Tattoo
The ocean means so much to the people of Marquesan! They see it as their second home and where they’ll rest on their final journey. So, getting this tribal tattoo showing cool wave designs is a great idea. Plus, this pink flower adds an extra beauty.
25. Marquesan Cross Tattoo on the Shoulder
Did you know that the Marquesan cross has a bit of a mystery surrounding its origin? It is kind of a link to the turtle shell. This cross is super famous and often used in Polynesian tattoos! It’s all about representing that perfect balance between different elements and spreading good vibes of harmony.
26. Marquesan Tiki Armband Tattoo
The tiki symbol is like a guardian spirit, kind of like watching over them and adding a dash of mystical vibes to this armband tattoo. Get this tattoo and shine out.
27. Ornamental Marquesan Back Tattoo
Ready for some Marquesan tribal art? Your back is the perfect canvas! Marquesan back tattoos blend intricate designs and motifs to create stunning patterns that cover your entire upper back. They use shading to give that authentic Marquesan tribal art vibe!
28. Marquesan Waves Shoulder Tattoo
This cool tattoo covers the upper shoulder and even extends towards the chest. It is filled with unique wavy and spiral lines. Plus, some parts are jet black, while others consist of delicate thin lines.
29. Hammerhead Shark Marquesan Tattoo
This back shoulder tattoo is super important to the Marquesan people. The hammerhead shark is drawn by using various symbols and it carries a lot of meaning. It symbolizes strength, protection, and a connection to the ocean.
30. Turtle and Tiki Face Marquesan Tattoo
In the calf, there’s a cool Marquesan tattoo! It has a turtle on the top and a tiki face below. Plus, it is surrounded by awesome geometric circles!
31. Behind the Ear Marquesan Tattoo
The Marquesan tattoo behind the ear is like a hidden treasure! There are two beautiful swirling pieces that look like leaves, with the bigger one involving a spearhead and enatas, and the smaller one featuring complex shark teeth.
32. Turtle Marquesan Calf Tattoo
Placed on the calf, this big turtle Marquesan tattoo represents strength and endurance, much like a turtle navigating the vast ocean. It can symbolize your resilience in facing life’s challenges.
33. Turtle Marquesan Back Shoulder Tattoo
Turtle tattoos hold a special place in the hearts of Polynesian cultures! A cute turtle which is decorated with spearheads is placed on the back shoulder. Give it a shot.
In the end, a Marquesan tattoo is more than just an impressive work of art. It’s a profound embodiment of a rich cultural heritage, a personal testament of courage, and a vivid expression of one’s identity. Whether you’re drawn to its deep symbolism, intricate patterns, or its bold aesthetics, a Marquesan tattoo is a unique, timeless statement that speaks volumes.