The Tattoo Project
11:06 AM
Tattoo project photo by Dan Kozma 1.jpgPhoto by Dan Kozma

For our Vancouver homies, starting tonight through the weekend, The Tattoo Project takes over Performance Works Granville Island for an exhibition that showcases the work of 12 photographers who shot 100 tattoo collectors in just three days. They sequestered themselves in the Vancouver Photo Workshops studio space. Here are the results.

The exhibit is produced Vince Hemingson of [Their videos on tattoo culture are some of my favorites.] Curator Pennylane Shen gathered Vancouver's most esteemed photographers for this show: Wayne A. Hoecherl, Melanie Jane, Marc Koegel, Spencer Kovats, Syx Langemann, Aura McKay, Pooya Nabei, Rosamond Norbury, Johnathon Vaughn, Jeff Weddell and Dan Kozma (whose work is shown above). Vince's own photography is part of the exhibit as well. The exhibit asks viewers to reflect on this:

The portrait camera and the tattoo--both profess, or pretend to reveal character. Richard Avedon said of portrait photography: "A portrait isn't a fact, only an opinion." It's true that the surface is all we've got. But what if that surface is adorned with images? Are tattoos symbols of a secret self? An attempt to bring the inside out? To reveal ourselves to the outside world? If tattoos are so meaningful, shouldn't that influence the portraitist's 'opinion'?

The fine art images that emerge from this experiment constitute a gallery exhibition unlike any other. It's here that artists, critics, and the public at large weigh in: Is the portrait a likeness--or is it a revelation?

See the video below for a behind the scenes peak:

The Tattoo Project will be the subject of an upcoming documentary film. More on that as it progresses. Admission to the exhibit is free, but a calendar from the project will be on sale, and the proceeds will go to DTES Vancouver's Ray-Cam Community Centre

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