After a wildly successful Tat2 convention last year, the Singapore Tat2 Show returns in 2010! Over 3 days (Jan 8th – 10th) at Singapore Expo Hall 6B, this year promises to be bigger and more eclectic with more than 300 Tattoo artists from 30 countries the world over, highlights this year include Chris Garver (Miami Ink, True Tattoo, Love Hate Tattoo Studio), Kim Saigh (L.A. Ink, Cherry Bomb Tattoo), Bob Tyrell (L.A. Ink, London Ink), Matt Booth (Room 101), Jeremy (Traditional Borneo Style) and Kirby (Utopia Studios).
Also, while the booths will be abuzz with tattoo aficionados, both artists and fans alike, there will also be a Miss Tattoo Asia competition everyday, with the Finals on the last day. The headlining performance will also be by multiple Guinness World Record holder and contortionist, Rubberboy. This performance is something you do not want to miss, while at the press conference, we were given a small preview, and this man can bend and stretch in ways that will blow your mind! Rubberboy performs on the second day, Jan 9th, 2PM.
One of the highlights for me will be to check out the work of Jeremy Lo who has been practicing the traditional Borneo style of tattooing by knocking wood instead of using needles. In my conversations with him, I learned that traditional villagers see tattoos as a cultural rite of passage, that villagers who left their nest were tattooed with particular symbols, and as they traveled, they would collect more tattoos as symbols of knowledge. In fact, to people in a similar culture, they are able to read the tattoos of each other, and piece together that one person’s life story. As a dying art, artists like Jeremy are proving to be the link between the past and the future, bridging cultures together and learning from everyone.
So yes, I asked some of the artists what they thought about the certain stigmas that more conservative societies heap undeservingly on body art. Chris Garver says “If you like tattoos, then get one. If you don’t, well it doesn’t hurt you. Don’t worry about what other people do if it doesn’t affect you.” Kirby shares a similar sentiment in that “Having a tattoo doesn’t mean you’re bad. It doesn’t mean if you put on a tie, wear a suit or carry a file, it means you’re good.”
Well said, I think if there’s anything that comes from learning from people who express their art on their bodies, it’s don’t judge any book by its cover.
Tickets are priced at S$22 (1-Day Pass), S$60 (3-Day Pass)