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Tattoos return to Cuba after years underground
The socialist revolution drove tattoos underground, with parlors getting raided because they were seen as capitalist immortality.
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In this Feb. 3, 2016 photo, Dione Lugones shows off her tattoo in the likeness of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, at La Marca, or The Brand tattoo parlor in Havana, Cuba. Skin art is on the rebound in Cuba, with hundreds of tattoo parlors operating largely unmolested across the country. The socialist revolution drove tattooing underground, with health inspectors and police raiding studios seen as health hazards and vestiges of capitalist immorality. (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

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This Feb. 3, 2016 photo shows a sculpture by Cuban artist Leo Canosa, composed of a tattooed doll dressed in a young pioneers school uniform, on display at La Marca, or The Brand tattoo parlor in Havana, Cuba. The Brand is an example of Cubaâs new acceptance of tattooing. The studio sits on two floors of a refurbished colonial building in the middle of Old Havana. (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

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In this Feb. 3, 2016 photo, tattoo artist Angel Fernando inks the arm of client Adrian Alfaro, at La Marca, or The Brand tattoo parlor in Havana, Cuba. Like so many other activities in Cuba, tattooing is neither illegal nor explicitly permitted and regulated, leaving it operating in a grey space Cubans refer to as âalegal,â meaning that it simply lacks any legal status, positive or negative. (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

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This Feb. 3, 2016 photo shows sketches for tattoos taped to a wall at La Marca or The Brand tattoo parlor in Havana, Cuba. âTattoo artists, in reality, donât have any official status, as artists or anything,â said Che Alejandro Pando, a tattooist whoâs been working in Havana for more than 20 years. âWeâve been fighting for them to accept us as artists in Cuba, but we havenât found success.â (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

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In this Feb. 5, 2016 photo, tattoo artist Mauro Coca works on a tropical bird down the length of arm of Julivic Marquez's arm in Havana, Cuba. The studio where Coca works, La Marca, or The Brand, is an example of Cuba's new acceptance of tattooing. The shop opened a year ago on one of Old Havana's busiest streets and has inked hundreds of tattoos for a mix of Cuban and foreign clients. It's been used as a space for government-sponsored art events and its managers say they've never had any trouble with the state despite their lack of a license explicitly permitting tattooing. (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

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This Feb. 3, 2016 photo shows a shelf lined with bottles of tattoo ink, as well as artwork displayed on the wall of La Marca, or The Brand tattoo parlor in Havana, Cuba. Like so many other activities in Cuba, tattooing is neither illegal nor explicitly permitted and regulated, leaving it operating in a grey space Cubans refer to as âalegal,â meaning that it simply lacks any legal status, positive or negative. And like so many other goods, tattooing supplies canât be purchased, meaning ink, needles and other goods must be brought in via travelersâ luggage. (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

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In this Feb. 3, 2016 photo, customer Adrian Alfaro, center, is flanked by tattoo artist Angel Fernando, and Leo Canosa, as they ready for an ink session at La Marca or The Brand tattoo parlor in Havana, Cuba. The studio is an example of Cubaâs new acceptance of tattooing. The shop opened a year ago on one of Old Havanaâs busiest streets and has inked hundreds of tattoos for a mix of Cuban and foreign clients. (AP Photo/Desmond Boylan)

Tattoos return to Cuba after years underground

The socialist revolution drove tattoos underground, with parlors getting raided because they were seen as capitalist immortality.

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