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Roman B's Profile

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Russia, a country where every third man had done time or been through the camps at one time or another during the Soviet era. The "Bosses" and "God-Fathers" in the Kremlin knew the value of free labor. So it's not surprising that some of my own family had been through the Soviet prison system. Its also not surprising that when we went to the beach in Russia, prison tattoos were abundant. I remember looking at the tattoos as a young child, images of religious icons, cathedrals, devils, cats, etc. I was fascinated, I must been like 7 or 8. I didn't even know they were called criminal tattoos. That name didn't come to mind until "The Books" out. In Russian they were called simply, "Nakolki" a slang word for tattoos. That brings me to how "MIR" came about. After I first saw the books, I knew that t-shirts and apparel with the tattoos is not too far away. The images are just too powerful and rebellious. A few years passed and I was working…

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  • Male
  • Born on January 7
  • Joined May 28, 2009

About

Russia, a country where every third man had done time or been through the camps at one time or another during the Soviet era. The "Bosses" and "God-Fathers" in the Kremlin knew the value of free labor. So it's not surprising that some of my own family had been through the Soviet prison system. Its also not surprising that when we went to the beach in Russia, prison tattoos were abundant. I remember looking at the tattoos as a young child, images of religious icons, cathedrals, devils, cats, etc. I was fascinated, I must been like 7 or 8. I didn't even know they were called criminal tattoos. That name didn't come to mind until "The Books" out. In Russian they were called simply, "Nakolki" a slang word for tattoos. That brings me to how "MIR" came about. After I first saw the books, I knew that t-shirts and apparel with the tattoos is not too far away. The images are just too powerful and rebellious. A few years passed and I was working in a tattoo shop and started noticing more and more people were coming in and asking to get an image from the books on themselves. We turned them away mostly, because the shop was owned by Russians and we didn't think it was a good idea to tattoo most of the stuff from the books on someone that knows close to nothing about that world and sub-culture. At that time I thought it would be cool if I could offer those people a t-shirt with the image as a sort of "consolation prize". Plus a part of me also wanted to spread this awesome Russian underground art to more people. A way for people to share their appreciation for this art with others. So I grabbed Val (my partner) and we put together the first 10 designs a few years ago and did a trial run and the rest is....well..the future of MIR remains to be seen.

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