Philadelphia Seaport Museum Hosts Tattoo Exhibit

Philadelphia’s Independence Seaport Museum opened in 1995 right on the Philly waterfront. Since then it has held many exhibits about sea life and now it is currently showing “Past to Present — Tattoo Paintings.” It is the first exhibit in which the museum hosted a guest curator.

Troy Timpel, tattoo artist at Philadelphia Eddie’s and owner of the company, Tattooed Kingpin, leads guests through an exhibit of “about 150 contemporary tattoo paintings from all over the country.” This is Timpel’s first time curating for a museum. He hopes that visitors will appreciate the “modern celebration of the maritime style.”

The exhibit showcases “flash art,” which is the industry term for individual tattoo designs, created by contemporary working tattoo artists. Their works display their original ideas with ink on paper as well as some painted pieces.

Timpel and other artists will be tattooing aboard the Olympia for the “Mighty Warship Olympia Tattoo Festival II,” June 1 through 3.

“We’re bringing acetate stencils which are old-style stencils that the sailors used to use,” Timpel said.

The work they do on the Olympia will represent the style of tattoos done in the 1970s.

The Independence Seaport Museum is located at 211 S. Columbus Boulevard, Philadelphia. “Past to Present — Tattoo Paintings” runs through June 3.

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