Artist Campaign

I was asked to share the following from an artist who is running an IndieGogo campaign:

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Aloha! My name is Rose Adare, I’m an evocative artist disabled by a muni train in 2005. To get through the hard times, I began painting truly inspiring, brilliant, out of the box people, and now I have solid offers for shows guaranteed in Oakland, San Francisco, Seattle, AND Brooklyn, NY! But I need your help to get there!

I’m not asking for plane tickets or hotels. I’ll sleep on couches and eat ramen. But I need help with shipping and production costs.

I’ve had three amazing shows already, at the Hawaii Museum of Contemporary Art, The J+ Gallery in Holualoa, and the prestigious Maui Arts & Cultural Center’s Schaefer Portrait Gallery, but now it’s time to reach the mainland.

Hawai’i is 75 miles across and is 2,467 miles from California. That’s a long distance to move 31 paintings, 5 plexiglass shadowboxes, and 35 plexiglass descriptions—especially when some of the paintings are 10 x 7 feet! The powerful success behind Restraint & Revolution “took a village,” and now it’ll “take a continent” to move across the ocean.

More about her art and samples of her work after the break.
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Rose Adare: Restraint & Revolution

Recently a friend forwarded me a video of an art opening — the one I’ve included below — asking me if I recognized anyone. I watched the video with curiosity, and yes, I did recognize someone, seeing my friend Kala Kaiwi (who was just featured in part III of the “Evolution” series) and a number of other modified and atypical models immortalized in paint. The artwork turned out to be that of Hawaiian artist Rose Adare, who I tracked down and interviewed about her current Restraint & Revolution gallery show.

“I set out to paint nontraditional people in a traditional medium.”

I should also mention that you can find out more about Rose and her art at her website, where you can also get in touch with her about both originals and prints (which are very reasonably priced by the way, starting at $20). Her current show will be at Holualoa’s J+ Gallery until March 10, 2013.

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* Are you a modified person yourself, or more of a fan?

I don’t have any hardcore bodymods yet, though I do have a fiery tattoo on my lower back I drew while learning to fire spin in Ireland, and I have four spike piercings crowning the top of my ear. All of my piercings were done by Kala Kaiwi, our resident specialist on the Big Island of Hawaii — he’s also the model in Primal Buddha.

* How did you get into piercing and tattoos?

A lot of things drew me to bodymod. I was a San Francisco goth while studying at the Academy of Art University — another shadow in the Deathguild scene, dancing on coffins at Spike’s Vampire Bar at Burning Man! In 2005 I was in a collision with a municipal train and wound up in ten body braces. With the overall body-pain I had to escape the cold of San Francisco so I moved to Hawaii. I wound up living with the wonderful John Corbin — R.I.P., fondly remembered as Burning Man’s flaming bagpipes. He used to have a flamethrower which would set off a huge jet of fire when he wailed! His house was covered in surreal murals, and my room was a bright pink girly-girl room with a mural of Pudge the Fish (the sandwich eating fish from Lilo and Stitch). Here’s me, lying in black, in a bright pink room with Pudge the Fish. Aloha!

Years later my partner, Alex Stitt, the fire dancer in Pyro Paramour, moved into a new place with Robert Bennett, the model in the painting Ardens. I adore Robert. He’s family, and the one who painted all the murals in my old house. He’s one of the best tattoo artists on the Big Island, and unlike many tattoo artists he’s also a painter, which gives him an eye for detail and form, and his professionalism is next to known.

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Snaking Rings

Gabriele of Maxart Body Piercing in Rome, Italy (ModBlog superstar) just did this wild play piercing scene using a just massive collection of captive bead rings, which appear to form a tube through which is drawn the soul of a flower — I particularly like the touch of the threading being pulled through a cheek piercing!

There are about 120 rings in all in this scene, and they took about three hours total to do, including some short breaks. The rings were taken out immediately afterwards at Gabriele’s insistence, I assume to keep scarring to a minimum (although it would make a cool scar to let these all reject!). I suspect that Gabriele must have been practically as sore as the client, after taking all those balls on and off.



Skin Removal Scarification = Profit?

Australian Israeli-born and currently Iceland-based conceptual jeweler Sruli Recht — who tends to have a wonderful sci-fi aesthetic to his fashion and design that is less silly than much of the “far out” ideas too-often presented by his field — recently had a roughly 1/2″ by 4″ strip of skin cut off his belly which was then tanned and wrapped around a 24k gold ring, now being offered for a half million dollars. The somewhat grotesque design doesn’t just look like random leather — it’s even got wiry belly hair. He calls it the “Forget Me Knot”. Recht has lots of experience working with dubious organic materials — animal and fish remains including a stillborn lamb, hair, spider silk from a modified goat — but this is the first time he’s used human skin.


Here’s a graphic YouTube video of the procedure and some stills from it. The procedure is actually quite fascinating if you’re more used to the sort of skin removal scars done in the body modification world where the concern is the scar, rather than the excised tissue. You’ll see the doctor first spend a surprisingly long time anesthetizing the area, then cutting the outline using a scalpel, and then quickly cutting off the strip of skin using a pair of surgical scissors. Next you’ll see an interesting use of an electrocautery tool to stop small bleeders, where instead of applying the electrocautery tool to the wound itself, the vessels are pinched using tweezers, which are then electrified. Finally the wound is sutured closed.

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Recht’s work is in a way another example of the “fine art” world catching up to and borrowing from the body modification world (Recht is no outsider though, and has tattoos as well as large gauge inner conch piercings), which has been using procedure remnants in jewelry for ages. Here are a few examples formerly featured on BME — a couple examples of removed nipples encased in cast acrylic resin (this seems to be a trend!), and a heart-shaped piece of human skin and cartilage inside a set of earplugs, also cast in clear resin. Below the pictures are a list of the previous entries that cover them in more detail.

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PS. If anyone wants a strip of my belly skin — I have plenty of it, more than I need — I’ll sell it to you for a hell of a lot less than a half million dollars!

Little Swastika Book

Marc, better known as Little Swastika, is an avant garde tattoo artist that’s a leader in the new worlds of dotwork, geometry, “trash” tattooing, neotribal spiritualism and fine art tattooing. He has just released a limited edition book of paintings and sketches done between 2005 and 2009. It is 108 pages long, printed in a limited hand-numbered and signed edition of 108 copies, and costs 108 euro (about $140 USD). This is a must-have for any tattoo studio — it’s not flash, but it’s a wonderful design resource — or tattoo artist interested in this style as well as art collectors. You can click below to take a closer look, or visit to find out how to get your own copy of this incredibly special book.


Marc’s work has been featured on ModBlog ever since I first saw his work, at the time at his earlier studio Swastika Freakshop, but while I have your attention, let me show you two recent creations. On the left, and amazingly dense and manic chestpiece that somehow mix the scrawlings of a madman with ripples and spirals and sacred geometry, and on the left, an evocative backpiece in dripping in saturated full color, with multiple layers of both scribbled block printing and Marc’s highly stylized and very recognizable red script. If you enjoy art tattooing, Marc is one of the best, creative and technically gifted.

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Finally, since they have not yet been covered on ModBlog, I want to give coverage to Marc’s work with double backpieces. Marc’s art is sometimes so big and powerful that it takes more than one person to contain it, as he splashes his striking visions across friends and families. Here are three examples of multi-person tattoos that he’s performed, as well as a shot of him working on laying down a stencil on two of his latest subjects. I love all of these (even though the one in the top row does cover up a BME logo!).

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Again, you can find Marc online at, or click here to see a collection of ModBlog entries of his work. I just spent a few minutes going through it myself and found lots of wonderful pieces that had slipped my memory — his portfolio is beyond incredible. Have I mentioned what a fan I am? Finally you can also track him down on Facebook at There are very few artists who I whole-heartedly endorse. Marc is one of them.

Funding Request: The Chaøs Chrønicles

Lukas Zpira and The Chaøs Chrønicles are currently seeking crowd-funding for the next stage in their artistic research journey, this chapter — which is already ongoing — taking place over about 2,500 miles of road trip from Guadalajara, Mexico, down through Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and ending up in Costa Rica. You can learn more about this stage of the project here on the blog (as well as on Mayliss’s White Rabbit blog), where you’ll find the photo below and any more gems. It’s only a relatively small number that they need to raise to make this project a reality, and those who donate at can get a variety of rewards like postcards from every city visited, printed and signed photos, and more.


I’ve just made a donation to this by the way — my general policy when I post about projects requesting money is that I wouldn’t ask you to donate to something that I don’t think is worthwhile myself. To make a general comment about the Internet, too many people think that it’s “good enough” to just share information like this. That by spreading the word, you’ve helped enough. Now, of course spreading the word is a good thing, but it means very little if it doesn’t also come with actual donations. So I just want to put it on the record that if I suggest to you that something is worth donating to, you can feel secure that I’m not just trying to get you to pay for something I believe in. I supported this project because I think Lukas is an artist that’s out there making the world a better place and I’d like to see his work continue. To say nothing of the fact that Lukas is something that’s given a lot to me personally and a lot to this community as a whole and I feel that we owe him.

Encircled by the Flight of a Bird

Fans of artist Joan Miro will recognize this instantly.  Jamie from Tattoo Temple in Hong Kong has reproduced Miro’s “Woman Encircled by the Flight of a Bird” on this young man’s forearm.  By taking a look at the original, it’s safe to say Jamie definitely faithfully reproduced the painting even with the change in medium.

Help out the youngest member of the BME family. Get a limited edition 2012 BME Classic Logo t-shirt. Read all the details here.

Injected with a poison

One of the galleries that doesn’t get a lot of coverage is the Art Gallery.  It’s located in the culture section of the galleries, and is a showcase of artwork from many talented artists the world over.  Paintings, sketches, sculpture, and photography are just some of the mediums you’ll find there.  This example comes from photographer Ivana O. whose work you saw earlier today with the corset photo.

Reproducing a moment

A client walked into Brandon “Fox” Layng‘s studio, Fox Tattoo Designs in Bowmanville with a photo of a painting.  The only thing he said was that it was “The exact moment everything changed”. Since doing the tattoo Brandon has looked high and low as to the origins of the original piece, so if you recognize it speak up, as he’d like to know a bit about the painting he reproduced.

Oh what a night

Vincent Van Gogh is known for a few things; his impressionist paintings, his bouts with mental illness that lead to his death, and a DIY partial earlobe removal.  As you can see by the tattoo below, his influence still carries forward to this day.  In a piece sent in by lollison to the tattoo galleries, artist Kris Miller puts together a piece heavily inspired by Van Gogh’s “The Starry Night”.