- Tattoo History & News Blog
- Tattoo History Articles & Bits
- Tattoo Artists Who Paved The Way
- Tattoo Grave Site Trip 2010
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Welcome to Buzzworthy Tattoo History!
My name is Carmen Forquer Nyssen. Here at Buzzworthy Tattoo History, I’ll be sharing some of my hard-earned tattoo history research, as well as, updates on relevant tattoo news, events, and projects.
I hope you enjoy these featured tattoo history articles!
One covers groundbreaking new information on the invention of electric tattoo machines and the others reveal the identity of two —until now —elusive characters in tattoo history. (Click on image for link).
I’ve passionately written about, researched, and studied tattoo history for nearly twelve years now. It all started long ago when I decided to document my family tree, an obsession that soon shifted focus to chronicling the career of my Great, Great Uncle —beloved twentieth century tattoo artist, Bert Grimm. I wanted to know everything —the people Bert worked with, historical context —everything. Before I knew it, tattoo history had taken hold of me. The rest snowballed from there. Over the years, I’ve progressively branched out, steadily but surely building a varied foundation of knowledge and a massive archive of original tattoo history research.
One thing I’ve learned is that every bit of insight counts. Creating meaningful windows into tattooing’s rich and often mysterious past means going the extra mile. Literally.
In addition to examining the usual resources at home —documents, books, and the internet —I’ve embarked on many a road trip to: visit libraries, museums, and archives around the country; seek out grave markers (click here Tattoo Grave Site Trip 2010 and here Find A Grave); attend exhibits and conventions; and even glean impressionistic remembrances of long forgotten tattoo neighborhoods. I’ve also visited with and/or interviewed scores of tattoo artists, relatives of tattoo artists, and other relatable characters. Along the way, I’ve made quite a few friends.
Patience, persistence, integrity, and sincere enthusiasm are cornerstones of good research. I hope all of them shine through my work. As for analytical skill and methodology, I owe much of that to my Linguistics degree. It seems off topic, I know. But the interdisciplinary field of Linguistics encompasses a diverse set of investigative approaches, lending itself to a wide lens of discovery that enriches any type of fact finding work. In other words, it’s perfect training for outside-the-box research.
Bert Grimm Tattoo History Book
My Bert Grimm book is in the works! This unprecedented, extensively researched biography has been years in the making and will reveal new and surprising insights into Bert’s life and career. I’m still working on the finishing touches. If anyone has information about Bert or the tattoo artists he worked with, I would love to hear from you! Contact me at email@example.com.
Boston Tattoo Book & Exhibit
A Boston tattoo history book and exhibit by Derin Bray, myself, and Peggy Hodges is another monumental, extensively researched project in progress. Check out our website at www.tattooedboston.com for an overview of the project, as well as, never before seen images and interesting tidbits of Boston tattoo history.
Derin Bray is an Art & Antique dealer, curator and historian based in the Boston area. He has published widely on the early folk art of New England, and is a leading collector of historic sideshow and tattoo material. His award-winning books include Bucket Town: Woodenware & Wooden Toys of Hingham, Massachusetts (2014) and Harbor & Home: Furniture of Southeastern Massachusetts (2009). He is a graduate of Yale University, and holds an MA from the University of Delaware’s Winterthur Program in Early American Culture.
Margaret Hodges is the author, under the pen name M.F. Bloxam, of The Night Battles (2008). She has collaborated with Derin Bray on several projects, including Bucket Town. She holds a BA in Theater and Writing from Carroll College, and an MA in Anthropology and Museum Studies from San Francisco State University.
For some time now, I’ve had the honor and pleasure of working as head researcher for the Tattoo Archive—a position that entails conducting research for both general purposes and for specific projects such as Chuck Eldridge’s Life & Times series.
Two 2015 releases I majorly contributed to are:
Ed Hardy’s Lew Alberts book
Intro by Ed Hardy: “…..More recently, detailed material about him has come to light through the research of tattoo historian Carmen Nyssen.”
And Yellow Beak Press’ Sailor Vern book.
Acknowledgements: “The foundation of this project was very difficult to formulate. Without the help of Carmen Nyssen, Chuck Eldridge, and Ed Hardy, this book would not have come to fruition..”
A big thank you goes out to Ed Hardy and Scott Boyer and Kayla Grosneth-Boyer of Yellow Beak Press for publishing so much of my research and making it accessible to tattoo enthusiasts across the globe.
Also, in July 2015, a Bert Grimm article I wrote was published by Z Tattoo Magazine.
See additional tattoo history projects here.
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The research on Buzzworthy Tattoo History represents the hard work and scholarship of the respective authors/scholars/tattoo historians. Content should not be used without permission or proper citation.
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The research on Buzzworthy Tattoo History represents the hard work and scholarship of the respective authors/scholars/tattoo historians. Content should not be used without permission or proper citation.X
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Bert Grimm, Tattooer Par Excellence
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