Major British tattoo exhibition to open in Cornwall in March

Tattoo Exhibition

Tattoo exhibition at the National Maritime Museum in Cornwall

I’m so excited about this! Today the National Maritime Museum, Cornwall released the final details of their brand new exhibition, Tattoo: British Tattoo Art Revealed.

Running from 17 March 2017 – 7 January 2018, this highly anticipated tattoo exhibition offers a genuinely ground-breaking and comprehensive history of British tattooing. It aims to tell a story that challenges long-standing myths and pre-conceptions about tattooing, whilst at the same time giving a voice to the astonishingly rich artistic heritage of tattooing as an art form in the UK.

It is estimated that about one in five of the UK population as a whole is tattooed. And yet, whilst the visibility of tattooing in contemporary culture may feel like something new, tattoos and tattoo art have always held a significant place in Britain’s history. The exhibition aims to celebrate this.

But as well as interesting archival material, the exhibition includes work by current tattoo artists, and an innovative installation which will literally bring the art off the gallery wall. The ‘100 Hands Project’, 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.

Tattoo Exhibition Deryn Twelve

Just one of 100 hands! Created by Deryn Twelve, photo from the artist’s Instagram


Silicone hand created by Holly Jase Ashby, photo from the artist’s Instagram

This last aspect, for me personally, brings something fresh to the exhibit. Many art events of this kind that have gone before tend to focus on the history of tattooing and it’s rich past. This entire exhibition, however, also sounds like it seeks to reflect the present and future of our precious artform.

This huge tattoo exhibition includes so, so much more. Read more of the details online and we hope to see you there in 2017!

Tattoo Exhibition Maritime Museum

The National Maritime Museum, Cornwall

Main exhibition photo: Abbi Hughes and Gina Goodman

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