Museum Edition





In the New York Historical Society exhibition, Tattooed New York, the deep roots of body art and tattoo culture in New York have been traced back three centuries. The Native American Haudenosaunee nation (Iroquois), from what is now known as the state of New York, were among the first documented communities with a well established practice of the art form. The exhibition opens with Colonial era anthropological texts, handwritten notes, and drawings dating back to the 1700s. European settlers created the documents in an attempt to describe and visualize the healing powers, spiritual meaning, life event, and identity marking characteristics of the practice. The pure artistry of the art form in the 21st century is captured in six large-scale Vibrachrome photographs printed by Duggal Visual Solutions. Hardy Rosenstein of Duggal worked closely with Marcela Gonzalez of the New York Historical Society to produce the stunning, frameless images which present bodies as canvases against black backdrops. The backs of human figures photographed from the knees, hips, or waist up, reveal full back tattoos that in some cases extend into full sleeve tattoos, down to mid-thigh, or gracefully crest over the lower back. The timeless magic of body art and tattoos, presented in Tattooed New York, is quite astonishing, and appears to be a truly global art form that continues to grow, evolve and never lose its charm.

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