Live Free or Die Artshow

Cheri Basak, co-owner and curator at Revolution Tattoo, recently hosted an incredible art opening - with the theme being "Live Free or Die" with the support of Northdown.

I asked her to expand a bit on why she choose that theme, (which is covered nicely in her curator statement below) and how she  determined participating artists. Cheri is to be applauded at bringing the fine art of tattooists to Chicago and surrounding areas.  Again, as noted in previous posts, this is much more common and regarded in both coasts, but not as prevalent in the Midwest.  Cheri has really laid the groundwork for this type of event here.  We collectors and artists are greatly appreciative of her passion and enthusiastic spirit but most of all her hard work.

Her curator statement:  The inspiration for this show came to be while browsing through a Don Ed Hardy flash book and seeing those words “Live Free or Die” wrapped in a sweet banner around a traditional style tattoo.  I was deeply impacted by the philosophy and how it made me feel extremely empowered and grateful to be a part of this industry.

For that reason, I wanted to gather these artists together to celebrate the freedom and stability that tattooing can allow while demonstrating a deep passion for the craft.  Tattooers have to work really hard to reinvent, create, self-promote, study, motivate, practice, inspire, preserve the past and set the trends to maintain success in their trade, but the essence of what they do is about the love of the art and tradition.

Furthermore, to truly be able to live free you have to love what you do so it never feels like work, money should not be the motivator.  It's about sustaining happiness and integrity, by any means necessary, while ignoring the risk of failure or death.  There are no rules in this life, you can make your own if you have the grit and bravery to do so, but that can be the most challenging part.

The show will run until January 6, 2013 and you can contact Cheri at the shop (Revolution Tattoo 773.486.8888) to make a purchase.  In choosing the artists Cheri also said these are the people she would get tattooed by!  She likes to show respect for their dedication to creating art other than tattooing.  It's also a good representation of what Chicago has to offer in tattoo art and Cheri includes as many different shops as she could.  As she told me "the most successful turn outs happen when you gather every body together from different shops and have a good old fashion bro down"....She mentions that Chicago needs more of that and I feel she is the leader in that task!  This leads to the question of what is up next?

"I met many new artists and shop owners that came to show support and want to be included in future shows, so that was pretty cool.   My next tattooer art show will be at a gallery or larger venue, and the theme is Vs.
I want the artists to experiment with pitting one thing against another either in a battle or a style.  This show is scheduled for the spring."

Will be looking forward to that!  The gallery of photos has just a sampling of what you can see at the show and a glimpse of the crowd that showed up.  Please go check this out and support these and all your local artists!

List of participating artists:

Tim Biedron, Josh Howard, Harlan Thompson -Pioneer Tattoo
Cassandra Knox -Tattoo Factory
Nuco Villanueva -Studio One
Caitlin Drake Mckay -Ageless Arts Tattoo
Chris "Turbo" Goff Jason Hoodrich -Taylor St. Tattoo
Chucho- Ace of 4 Hearts
Beth Cisco -Maximum Tattoo
Patrick Cornolo, Heath Rave, Jennifer Trok, Tim DeRose- Speakeasy Custom Tattoo
Omar Gutierrez, Max Brown, Marshall Brown, Chito Tena, Casey Sass,
Nole Schuyler- Revolution Tattoo
Matt Moreno,  Paul"Frog"Murphy -Tatu Tattoo
Erik Gillespie, Nick Colella -Chicago Tattoo Company

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