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This 101-Year-Old Tattoo Artist Is the Last of Her Kind



Whang-Od is the last remaining mambabatok—a tattoo artist in the Philippines using traditional hand-tap methods. At 101 years old, she is the last master of the thousand-year-old trade that first began as a way to honor warriors in battle. Using a hammer and thorns, Whang-Od taps coal ink into skin. Today, she is training her grandniece to carry on her legacy, keeping the family mamababatok tradition alive.

This Great Big Story was inspired by Genesis.

#Tattoos #TattooArtist #Ink
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30 Comments

  1. Good Day Sir.
    I am asking a permission to use some of the clips of your video for my school project and I'll make sure to give credits to you.
    Thanks ❤

  2. Nice, totally not like people can copy from this! Good job guys now the internet can know some patterns and make it themselves (no hate). Its interesting knowing about other traditions from my country

  3. My great grandma turned 100 November last year, she was born and raised in the Philippines for half her life, then moved to Hawaii. Sadly, she passed away a week or two ago.

  4. It's crazy how good her skin looks for 101. Her chest didn't look wrinkly at all. I've seen people in their 60s who have more elderly looking skin than her. Plus, all of her teeth and they're straight and white. She looks like a 70yr old that looks good for their age.

  5. This is really wholesome! All my love to you Grandma Whang Od! Don't let scumbags like Nas Daily put you down. Hope you live an even longer and healthier life!

  6. woah this is similar to my country Samoa and other possible polynesian islands, we kinda do the same thingo but with different designs and using bones i think and in Samoa we call it the tautau which were actually supposed to be for the women but ended up as a thing for men aswell.

  7. Funny how many Filipinos are ashamed of their culture and identity but when people from other cultures find these things interesting about Philippine culture, they start showing some pride for it. Funny how that works. Filipinos need to stop hiding who they are and stop claiming they are Spanish or Pacific Islander. Philippines itself has a diverse set of cultures unique to the Philippine people's identity.