Russian Criminal Tattoo Police Files features more than 180 photographs of Russian criminal tattoos and official police papers from the collection of Arkady Bronnikov, regarded as Russia’s foremost authority on criminal tattoo iconography. From the mid-1960s to the late 1980s, Bronnikov worked as a senior expert in criminalistics at the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs, and part of his duties involved visiting the correctional institutions of the Ural and Siberia regions. It was there that he interviewed convicts, gathering information and taking photographs of their tattoos, amassing one of the most comprehensive archives of this phenomenon. Bronnikov regularly helped to solve criminal cases across Russia by using his collection of tattoos to identify culprits and corpses. Every image discloses evidence of an inmate’s character: aggressive, vulnerable, melancholic, conceited. The prisoners’ bodies display an unofficial history waiting to be deciphered, told not just through tattoos, but also in scars and missing digits.
Published in 2016 by FUEL Publishing
5 x 8, Hardcover