NORDIC TATTOOING is a new historical book of tattooing from Nordstroms Forlag by writer and photographer Jon Nordstrøm, the publisher of the hotly debated and highly acclaimed Danish Tattooing.
With its 320 pages, NORDIC TATTOOING provides an interesting look into the development of tattooing in the Nordic countries between 1885 and 1985. The Swedish tattooists, who were sailors and tattooed Norwegians, and the Danish tattooists who gathered in Nyhavn and tattooed drunk Swedes are all in the book. The book is full of large photos, befitting a true coffee table book.
We start out in Nyhavn in 1890, when Gustav Bechmann had ended up in jail due to some 'irregularities'. While there, he drew up a very beautiful book of tattooing boards with the oldest tattoo sketches known in the Nordic countries. Also featured is Ink-Hans, who in 1901 became the first tattooist at 17 Nyhavn – the world's oldest tattoo parlour still in business today.
In Sweden, Axel Johanson marked the beginning of Swedish tattooing when he opened his shop in Gothenburg just before World War I. A few years after the war, he was forced to retire – during a dynamite blast he was hit in the face by a large rock that knocked out one of his eyes. A couple of days passed before the doctor was able to find the rock.
Motifs were simple and small – ''faith, hope and charity'', tall ships and the Statue of Liberty were some of the motifs. The tattooist's tools of the trade were also simple – a couple of small drawings, a little bit of ink rod and 3-4 sticks with different numbers of needles attached was all it took to execute the simple motifs of the time.
Doc Forrest in Sweden and Tattoo Svend and Roxy Helle in Denmark were the tattooists who broke with the 'old school' in the 70s – large tattoos, new techniques and curious tattooists who could draw would be the end of the good old days. More than 200 of the book's pages show beautiful reproductions of the tattooists' original drawings through 100 years.
Language: Danish and English
Size: 25x25 cm ( 1,7 kg)