On Thursday, October 11th the premiere for Tattoo Nation, the first feature length documentary about the revolutionary style of Black and Grey tattoo art, will be held at the ArcLight Theater in Hollywood. The film traces the origins of tattoo and its explosion into mainstream culture.
The following week on Thursday, October 18th the film will be released nationwide and shown at special theatrical screening events in over sixty cities. Tattoo Nation holds its international premiere on September 29th in London, England during the world’s largest tattoo convention.
Incredibly 40% of U.S. adults under 40 years old have at least one tattoo and it’s estimated that the total number of Americans who have one or more tattoos is 45 million. Tattoo Nation examines the concerns of tattoo expression and acceptance. Tattoos are a topic that provokes intense controversy and debate – and it’s an issue that will continue as generations X and Y grow older.
The iconic tattooed actor Danny Trejo, star of the cult-classic film, Machete and regular on the TV series Sons of Anarchy,narrates. Trejo can credit his iconic Black and Grey tattoos with propelling the success of his acting career. With such an authentic voice, the film tells the tale of how it all started when Charlie Cartwright and Jack Rudy boldly opened the first tattoo parlor, Goodtime Charlie’s, in the heart of East LA’s Chicano community in 1975.
Tattoo Nation presents a streetwise history of the Black and Grey tattoo style via archival footage, original interviews, photography and a vibrant music score. The film showcases the journey of a niche community art form blossoming into a worldwide phenomenon. The legendary artists, at the forefront of the movement, tell their stories for the first time. Original interviews include Jack Rudy, Freddy Negrete, and Charlie Cartwright, along with other key artists, the iconic Ed Hardy,celebrity tattoo artists Mister Cartoon and Mark Mahoney, LA Ink’s Corey Miller and tattoo legend Kate Hellenbrand, among several others.
“I made up my mind that the story of the birth of this unique American art form should be told by those who lived it. Chicano Black and Grey tattoo is similar to Blues music, a beautiful art form born from a marginalized segment of our society,” commented director Eric Schwartz.
To support the screening events, there will be a robust on-line campaign promoting connect points via movie Facebook, Website, Twitter, and Instagram pages. Screening partners Tattoo Artist Magazine and the popular Facebook Page “Tattoo Acceptance in the Workplace” look to turn the screenings into first-ever tattoo meet-ups.