Lady Ink Days: All-Women Tattooist Convention
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Last weekend, Beverly Yuen Thompson attended an all-women tattoo artist convention in Berlin and shares her experience and photos from the event.

See more images in her Flickr album.

By Beverly Yuen Thompson.

Lady Ink Days, an all-women artist tattoo convention, was held last weekend, March 25-26, 2017, at the venue Huxleys Neue Welt, in Berlin. Germany happens to lead Europe by hosting the most tattoo conventions each year -- 108 -- out of the European total of 516 shows in 2017 alone (according to World Tattoo Events).

There have been at least five other all-women artist conventions in cities including Rome, Paris, Amsterdam, Warwickshire UK, and Orlando, Florida. I have attended the Marked for Life Orlando Convention for many years, as it formulated the basis for my book Covered in Ink: Tattoos, Women and the Politics of the Body, for which I interviewed women tattoo artists and women tattoo collectors.

Lady Ink Days was my first convention to attend outside of the US. It was a small but lively convention held in Berlin, an international, urban city where tattoos can be seen on many people in the city. There were fifty shops represented, most from Berlin, or Germany, but others were from Istanbul, Rotterdam, Moscow, and Haugesund in Norway. Yellow Sunshine provided a vegan food bar, including veggie burgers and vegan cupcakes and entertainment included the rap group Checan, comendian Deus ex Comedia, Mr. DJ B-side, and of course, many tattoo contests: black & white, individual, small, large, and color tattoo, best of day, and best of show.

While women tattoo artists continue to be a minority in this male-dominated industry, especially in the global context, shows like these demonstrate their presence and talent within the industry.

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