My research recently is about comparing the differences between the Chinese and the west tattoo industry, in terms of the quality of art, social responsibilities have been taken, marketing strategies etc. Turns out that what I thought the Chinese tattooists have been missing is not entirely true. There are also Chinese tattooists who would love to do charity works and try their best to maintain a high sterilization standard even when the country has no regulations published yet. And there are also incredibly talented tattoo artists in China, such as Heng Yue, Yilong Hu, Deliang Hu, Mumu, Jiuwu, Jie Chen etc.
Some of the Chinese tattooists are well known in the world of tattooing, but some of those are still hidden behind the "great wall". The language barrier is also an essential reason why the world is not familiar with Chinese tattoo industry. In my interview with Maxime, he thought that it’s incredibly exciting to imagine the amount of innovation and the potential of tattooing in China. After my research, I have to say that we don't have to imagine, it's already there.
My question was "How can modern Chinese Tattooists learn from the western tattoo renaissance?". But the deeper I dig into the Chinese tattoo world, the less I want to use the word "learn". I start to realise the great potential and creativity of the modern Chinese tattooist community. Some people managed to share their work with the world but some did not. And the culture behind those incredible pieces has rarely been known.
People embrace tattoo styles from different cultures. Posting the images is one way to do that, but according to my research, people want to know more. Many Chinese tattooists I have interacted told me that they would love to know more about the cultural background behind those tattoo styles, the tattoo collectors as well.
Different culture evolves different artworks, I believe that tattooing could be one of those tools to share culture and creativity with people from different cultural backgrounds. And how can I achieve that, is my new research question.
In conclusion, my new question would be, "How can culture and creativity be shared through tattooing?". I want to test that if people would be interested in the cultural background behind tattooing and what kind of content would draw the most attention, either it's about history, politic movements or legendary stories. My intervention would be sharing tattoo pieces within their own cultural stories through the opposite language (Chinese to English and the other way around). I would measure that through comments and clicks of the posts.
© Deliang Hu