ZOOM JAPAN is the only UK magazine dedicated solely to exploring Japanese culture, written in English.
In late 2016, I was excited to learnt that the publication had launched issue dedicated entirely to tattoos. It was a fascinating read, jam-packed with information about the traditional art-form that owes so much to this one country.
“Tattoos are often associated with the underworld because of the many yakuza films that depict hardened criminals displaying their sometimes frightening tattoos to a startled audience,” said the team at ZOOM JAPAN.
“Nevertheless, people in the west still know little about the world of Japanese tattoos. That’s why we decided to learn more about it by meeting up with those who continue to practice this ancestral tradition, as well as the new generation of practitioners who are attempting to explore fresh approaches to the art of tattooing.”
The issue included an exploration of why tattoos are in fact rejected by so many in Japanese culture, an interview with tattoo master Horiyoshi III and so much more.
The mag’s mission is to “allow people in the world to deeply understand what Japan is and what the Japanese people are.” For anyone wanting to learn about Japanese tattooing – this is your chance to be properly educated by those who know what they’re talking about.
Each month 35,000 copies of the print publication are distributed to Japanese restaurants and shops.
Even though it was released late last year, you may be able to grab a copy in person still. If not, you can read the entire issue online.
You may also like to read: ‘The resurgence of Tebori, traditional Japanese tattooing by hand’
Words: Beccy Rimmer
Photos: ZOOM JAPAN / Horiyoshi III / Beccy Rimmer