« In the future, tattoo flash and photographs will probably be all that remains of today’s tattoos. This is why flash are so important: they are documents of what tattooing means today. Would Jimi Hendrix have become the legend he is, if we didn’t have his albums today? »
Three years have passed since Tattoo Life Production entrusted a previous book to this team: now it’s time to hear what the eight tattooists who are currently working at Spider Murphy’s have to tell us. The result is a collection of 110 unique works and a group effort which represents the style of this tattoo shop.
It is a challenge to use words to describe and talk about these pieces: these are icons which speak to the history of the United States from the Twenties on, carried on the skin of Americans. Is there any other way to describe these flash illustrations, than to simply define them as the «Spider Murphy’s style»?
Hearts, daggers, skulls and the faces of sweet, captivating and unfathomable young maidens. Sailing ships, horseshoes, alchemy symbols, hourglasses, phials, witches and black cats that peep out from the corners of each pages… And more: writings, amulets, zodiac signs and constellations, references to freemasonry and contemporary images like skateboards, irreverent characters from comics and ironic portraits of strapping young surfers. You’ll find the classic icons of tattooing and new subjects, which have already gone down in history.
Spider Murphy's is one of the most famous tattoo shops in the world.
It is located at 1006 Lincoln Ave @ Fourth Street, Downtown San Rafael, California.
Theo Mindell, Paul Dobleman, Heather Bailey, Bryan Randolph, Jeremy Kimzey, Aaron Hodges, Laurent Trelaun, Betty Boobs.