Image courtesy of Art Exchange.
Artists educated in fine arts are able to transform texture and dimension, skillfully portraying what they see and what they imagine. Tattoo artists who know these tricks can produce these powerful visual effects on skin.
The Art Exchange Gallery (ARTX) presents the opening of the exhibition, Transcending Tattoo: The Pursuit of Excellence, on February 25 to feature six tattoo artists from Southern California, known by their communities for their exceptional skills in both fine art and tattooing.
The six artists include Shawn Barber, owner of Memoir Tattoo in Los Angeles; Shay Bredimus, artist at Outer Limits in Long Beach; Mikey Carrasco, artist at High Voltage Tattoo, run by Kat Von D and featured in LA Ink; Henry Lewis, artist at Memoir Tattoo in Los Angeles; Sergio Sanchez, artist at Timeline Gallery in San Pedro; and Carlos Torres, part owner of Timeline Gallery.
Bredimus also curated the event and carefully selected each of the participants. Another artist considered was Kari Barba, owner of Outer Limits. However, she was unable to participate due to a time constraint.
“We wanted it as diverse as possible,” Bredimus told the Post. “To have a lesbian woman in Long Beach would have been ideal [...] She was a top choice, especially since I work for her, too.”
These artists’ backgrounds in fine arts range from being mostly self-taught, like Torres, to teaching college courses on the subject, like Sanchez.
Even through portraits, which are generally aimed to look as accurate as possible, each artist tailors every piece to his own unique style.
Bredimus added that the ultimate purpose of the art exhibit is simply for the community to enjoy. ARTX, a nonprofit organization, is where people can come together to learn, create and exchange art. Its objective is to help establish and sustain a new generation of artists.
“The concept is to give back to the city,” he said. “The city has given me a life—has given me a career. It’s not for tattooers or art appreciators. It’s for Long Beach.”
The free opening event begins at 6:30PM on Saturday, February 25. For more information, visit the website here.
ARTX is located at 356 East Third Street.