Histoire du tatouage

Exposition Tatoueurs, tatoués

J’ai eu la chance de participer au vernissage de cette exposition exceptionnelle au Musée du Quai Branly.

« Love, Tattoos and Family » was born from my wish to pay a tribute to all tattoos’s addicts and the love they have for their family.

As many others did, I got my first ink when I was 17. For the love of tattoo, but also to belong to a loved music tribe aswell. I was of course fascinated by the art which I tried to practice a few times. That was 15 years ago and the skill was much more like a craft, preparing our own needles, assembling machines. Now you can buy a kit and that’s it. I’m still getting tattooed, but today I chose my designs with a more mature mind. The culture is a big part of my life and I’m appreciating it more and more as time goes by. I’m reading a lot of books, trying to understand the connection between our society and tattoo, and this link of mislove that has more or less always existed.

One day I became a mom. That was My success, My unfailing source of happiness.

I met the anaesthetist who shouted « what’s that trend again? I’m fed up, you won’t get any epidural… » Ok, I was expecting the risk, but hearing the word « trend« …. I was 27, I was getting tattoos since 17 and that woman was allowing herself to judge « my » culture like the need of sticking to a trend, like a useless and fickle act… It was truly that event that encouraged me to realize that photographic serie. Not because I wished to justify myself, but I wanted to represent that culture. To claim that you may start at teenagehood, but you can be 30 now and perfectly assuming it, loving tattoo without any regret.

What also decided me to start that project is that I was approaching 30 and feeling more and more in adequacy with the tattooed people’s image reflected by society through the media. I think they were stuck in the 90’s. Not a single utter documentary about the subject, the press keeping on conveying the same common ideas… While advertissing is using an idealized and immature image : heavy tattooed people, obviously (Levis ads or Temps des Cerises), but beautiful, young and rock’n roll.

Creating this photographic serie was the will to propose a different image of the tattooed. Ordinary people with family, with real emotions. Far away from fashion’s clichés… But I also wished to represent the tattoo culture in France, the one that reached its highest point in the 90’s and which is remaining. Because all these medias may be writting down their democratization’s theory, they’re still not changing the tattooed’s image… Luckily the passionned ones are making this more and more present culture grow. I’m thinking about Jérôme Pierrat who’s feeding the french tattoo historic bibliography with really good books such as  » Mauvais Garçons ». I’m thinking about Yann Black who has raised tattoo to art’s level and has opened the way to many different styles. I’m obviously thinking of Anna Mazas’s book, « Life under my skin ». It brought a new energy to tattoo’s perception as a thought act and a history’s holder. I’m thinking of all this persons who are always improving french tattoo by their words, their photos, videos, web sites.

I hope to continue this serie for the rest of my life, so do not hesitate to contact me for a shooting in all simplicity!

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