Ariana Grande’s New Anime Tattoo Is Freakin’ Huge… And Very Poignant
Ariana Grande was freshly inked this week with what may be her largest tat yet, but who knew the pop star was an otaku?
On Instagram Wednesday (August 29), Grande revealed her latest tattoo: a giant illustration of Chihiro, the young, animated heroine from beloved Japanese filmmaker Hayao Miyazaki's 2001 Academy Award winner, Spirited Away.
In an Instagram Story, the Sweetener singer, who hinted at her love for Spirited Away earlier this week on Twitter, showed off the large design on her arm, along with an excerpt about the character.
"Chihiro's growth into a capable individual is a core factor to the movement of Spirited Away's plot," she shared. "During her adventure in the Spirit World, she matures from an easily-scared girl with a child-like personality to match her age to a hard-working, responsible, and brave young girl who has learned to put her fears aside for those she cares for.
"To protect her friends...Chihiro sheds her former personality and adapts to her environment to become a courageous, quick-witted and reliable girl," the pop star continued.
If Chihiro's journey sounds familiar, that's because it very much parallels Grande's own topsy-turvy experience over the past year or so. After the May 20, 2017 Manchester Arena bombing, Grande recalled that everything "felt upside down" in her life. In recent interviews, she's also opened up about Sweetener marking a sort of transformation for herself both as an artist and as a young woman.
Just as Chihiro triumphs over her own trauma in Spirited Away, coming out the other side stronger, more mature and self-actualized, so did Grande overcome and wholly transform from the challenges she faced this year.
Even more poignant, the tattoo was created by Mira Mariah, the same artist who inked Grande's bee symbol tattoo to honor the victims of the Manchester attack.
But the performer's new tattoo isn't Grande's only indication that she's a fan of Japanese pop culture: The artist has been learning Japanese for years, and has made her fondness of things like Pokemon and Harajuku street fashion well known, even teaming up with popular Tokyo department store Shibuya 109 for a collaboration in 2016.