Temporary Tattoos: Anything goes

February 10, 2017

For every exhibition, DHC/ART Education presents Traces, a public project that invites visitors to respond to the artworks they saw and the ideas that they encountered during their visit.

The Traces project for the Wim Delvoye exhibition is called Tattoo. Visitors are invited to draw a design on customized grid paper available in the Traces space (451 St-Jean). The designs are then printed on temporary tattoo paper and made available to subsequent visitors. Thus, everyone is invited to draw a tattoo that someone else will wear, and leave with a tattoo that another participant drew.

Tattoo is inspired by Wim Delvoye’s Tattooed Pigskins series, and invites a redefinition of artist and art, as artists and visitors become tattooists and animals’ and visitors’ skin becomes artwork. It also encourages reflection on tattooing as communication, and the trend of temporary tattoos for children.

The results thus far have been plentiful, at times thoughtful, humorous and/or critical. There have been multiple drawings of pigs, portraits, and sayings (“Praise the Queen!” and “Kiss me, but ask first”). It is always interesting to get a glimpse into a visitor’s response to an exhibition – or simply, what designing a tattoo for someone else awakens in him or her! Stick figures? “I love you, Mom”? Perhaps an oversized evil kitten that plays with the earth like a toy mouse? Anything goes.

Amanda Beattie
DHC/ART Education