Art by Tattooists: Beyond Flash

Tattoo [node-title]
Published on: 08 September, 2009

Author: Jo Waterhouse
ISBN: 978-1-85669-631-9
Laurence King: Available from
Price: £12.95

It is a liberating statement to iterate that tattooing is a form of art, and here is documented proof of that fact. “Art By Tattooists” avoids the more common branches of tattoo art (e.g. flash) and focuses on the canvas creations of a cross-section of tattooists, from Into You’s Lucy Pryor to Daniel Albrigo at New York Adorned. Jo Waterhouse provides wonderful documentation of a bridge between the worlds of fine art and tattoo art, demonstrating how they are not as far removed as some would like to believe, and in many cases are indeed one and the same. The juxtaposition of traditional tattooing themes and contemporary subject matter makes for a varied platter on which to feast the eyes, and the range of media integrated ensures that the artwork remains fresh as the pages progress, and you cannot help but revel in just how gifted the artists who contributed to this book are. The interview snippets that precede each artist’s work might have been better delivered as simple biographies rather than the disjointed couple of paragraphs that are here, but this keeps the text fleeting and the focus firmly on the art, which is where is should be.