Live Tattooing

Live tattooing trend coming to more Toronto bars?

On Thursday night at the Drake as part of Quick Fix/Art for You held every week, William Huffman eradicated all the bad karma he may have collected over his numerous years as Associate Director of Toronto Arts Council. Huffman has been a longstanding Toronto arts person - from curating, writing, teaching, past board member of such artist-run-centres as Mercer Union, and directing galleries like A Space. I know him, I've art-partied with him, and I've seen him attend gallery shows demonstrating his support for the Toronto arts community.

Part of his annual performance - past years have included getting photographed in his underwear for Fab Magazine - he decided to first serve drinks in the Drake Lounge. Then, then! With artists, gallerists, and friendly supporters watching, William offered up his bicep for a tattoo, done by Evie from Yonge St. Tattoos, that forever says: "I regret to inform you..." which echoes the first line of rejection letters for grants that have been sent out to hopeful artists across this city.

Huffman had the font for "I regret to inform you..." designed by local graphic plus environmental designer/artist/visionaire Barr Gilmore. Gilmore, at the forefront of graphic design in Canada (he designed the infamous "No Logo" cover and catalogues for artists such as Dexter Dalwood, Rachel Whiteread and Annie Pootoogook), has also been involved with corporate identity in addition to designing dozens of catalogues for Gagosian Gallery from the mid-90s to present. How fabulous would it be to have a personally designed piece of art by this recent inductee into the Royal Canadian Academy of Art tattooed on your body f-o-r-e-v-e-r.

Writing by Swapna Tamhane. Photograph courtesy of The Drake Hotel.


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