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Tattoo: British Tattoo Art Revealed

‘Tattooing is a magical, romantic, exciting and often-misunderstood art-form’. Dr Matt Lodder

The exhibition challenges long-standing myths and pre-conceptions about tattooing when it comes to class, gender and age, whilst at the same time celebrating the astonishingly rich artistic heritage of tattooing in the UK.

The 100 Hands

Tattoos are a living and uniquely three-dimensional form of art. The Museum responded to this by commissioning an installation that literally brings the art off the gallery wall to create a ‘sculptural map’ of British tattoo art today. The ‘100 Hands’, curated by Alice Snape of Things and Ink magazine, is based around one hundred silicone arms, each tattooed with an original design by 100 of the leading tattoo artists working across the UK.

The 100 Hands installation part of British Tattoo Art Revealed at The National Maritime Museum Cornwall in Falmouth. Photo by Luke Hayes

Challenging pre-conceptions and celebrating tattooing’s rich artistic heritage

The exhibition challenges long-standing myths and pre-conceptions about tattooing when it comes to class, gender and age, whilst at the same time celebrating the astonishingly rich artistic heritage of tattooing in the UK.

Tihoti-buttocks-in-situ-Luke-Hayes-tattoo

Major art commissions

The exhibition also includes three major art commissions on hyper realistic body sculptures from three tattoo artists working in three very different tattoo traditions. Tihoti Faara Barff’s work celebrates the modern revival of Tahitian tattooing; Matt Houston’s commission is a heroic celebration of the sailor tattoo; and Aimée Cornwell, a second-generation artist and rising star in the tattoo world, illustrates how tattooing is breaking down different artistic boundaries with her own form of fantasia.

Reclaiming the Narrative – a brand new commission

Opening Friday 24 June

Reclaiming the Narrative features 14 pieces of newly commissioned work created by 14 Black and POC tattoo artists, all working in the UK today, these incredible new artworks represent a celebration of contemporary tattoo art on Black and brown skin.

The installation forms a powerful artistic response to the original exhibition, addressing omissions and cultural biases contained in the narrative of the 2017 exhibition, and is intended to be a direct intervention into a wider, necessary and vital conversation around diversity of representation – historical and contemporary – in the story of British tattoo art.

National Maritime Museum
Cornwall Trust
Discovery Quay
Falmouth
Cornwall
TR11 3QY

Tel: +44(0)1326 313388

Email: enquiries@nmmc.co.uk

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