The recent history of tattooing in Europe and North America

Session Date: 
Feb 9, 2024

This presentation presents a new account of the development of professional tattooing in Britain and America since the late 19th century. Research based exclusively in primary sources reveals that the story of what kickstarted the creation of commercial tattooing, and what sustained it, ultimately becomes intelligible as a small and interconnected network of transnational artists and – crucially – clients. These newly clarified networks problematise both the date and form of the customary notion of a “Tattoo Renaissance” in the 1970s and 80s. Moreover, this research presents a more diverse account of the transmission of design, technology and influence throughout Euro-American tattooing than had previously been understood both within the industry, and beyond. This talk is drawn from research for Dr. Lodder’s next book on the history of the modern Euro-American tattoo industry, due to be published in late 2024 with Yale University Press.

File 2024_02_09_09_Lodder.mp4274.62 MB