Get a better understanding of the meaning of superstar Dwayne ‘the Rock’ Johnson’s iconic pair of tattoos.
Superstar actor, businessman and occasional professional wrestler Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is a significant ink collector and one of the most recognizable tattooed people on planet Earth.
Whether he’s on set, in the ring, or sweating it out in “Iron Paradise,” Rock is a symbol of hard work and dedication. His enthusiasm and commitment to hard work, family and legacy are demonstrated through his choice of body art.
How many tattoos does Dwayne Johnson have?
Johnson has two tattoos. His most famous is the large tribal piece on his left arm, shoulder and chest. He also has a half-sleeve tattoo of a brahma bull on his right arm, a monumental tattoo that covers up a much smaller and older piece that references his old college nickname.
Polynesian tribal tattoos
The Rock’s tribe represents his family, personality, and ancestral traditions. Johnson’s father, Rocky, who sadly passed away in January 2020, was a pioneering black Nova Scotian wrestler. His mother, Ata Johnson, is of Samoan descent.
The Rock’s tribe represents his family, personality, heritage and ancestral traditions. The intricate design of the Polynesian tribe covers his left chest, shoulders, and arms in a half-sleeve design.
It was tattooed by Po’oino Yrondy during a vacation to Hawaii that Johnson took with his cousin Tanon’i in 2013. Obtaining a traditional tribal item of this type is a rite of passage for young Polynesians who want to tell their stories and those of their ancestors on their skin.
Johnson met with Yrondi for hours for a pre-tattoo consultation before spending three separate, 20-hour sessions perfecting the dazzling etching. Johnson said the work is an important part of his cultural heritage, helping to protect him spiritually as well as detailing his life’s journey.
Each piece of Rock’s tattoo has a very specific meaning, with spiritual protection at the forefront of his Polynesian tribal body art.
- A broken face with shark teeth marks: this acts as Rock’s spiritual guardian, symbolizing his constant struggle to live and reach his full potential.
- Sun: evergreen theme in tribal tattoo, orb symbolizes good luck
- A/ga fa’atasi: Meaning three people in one. This represents Dwayne, his first wife Dany, and daughter Simone
- The Great Eye: a protective symbol used to distract enemies in battle
- Turtle shell: to watch over and ward off evil spirits
- Stones of Achievement and Abundance: these act as a visual representation of the heritage foundation on which Johnson’s life was built
- Coconut Leaves: These cards acknowledge a Samoan warrior leader
- Descending spiral: application of this technique is used to show the past, present and future
- Two eyes: another protective symbol representing the ancestors watching over his path
- A priest and guide: these characters symbolize enlightenment
Covered cow tattoo
Johnson’s other tattoo is a half-sleeve bull on his right upper bicep. It’s an abstract black and gray skull with white accents threaded into the piece. This bull is a cover-up of an older, smaller brahma bull alluding to the Rock College moniker and Taurus zodiac sign.
The new bull was inked by renowned artist Nikko Hurtado in 2017 and took more than 20 hours to complete. In an official Instagram post introducing his new addition, Johnson said of the bull’s symbolism: “Every detail reflects my personal history. “The cracks and severe damage to my bones represent the difficult life lessons I have learned over the years. Like scars and wrinkles – I am grateful to have them because they are earned,” he wrote.
“Towards the horn, not up or to the side but straight forward symbolizes unrelenting energy and forward progress. The core and anchor of this image lies in the eyes. Look closely and you will find life, energy, strength and you will feel MANA (spirit). The Eye tells the story of a groundbreaking positive energy that is always ready to dent the universe.”
Source: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s Tattoos & What They Mean – Tekmonk Bio, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s Tattoos & What They Mean – KOLNetworth, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s Tattoos & What They Mean – Blogtomoney