perseverance - japanese tattoo tradition in a modern world
This groundbreaking exhibition explores Japanese tattooing as a fine art form, acknowledging its roots in ukiyo-e and documenting the work of contemporary masters of the craft. Focusing on seven of the world's best tattooers, Perseverance features extraordinary life-sized photographs, sculpture, and drawings - all created with intimate knowledge of the art form's rich history and tradition.
Despite repeated government attempts to ban the practice in Japan (as well as its common perception as an "underground" activity because of its association with the yakuza) traditional Japanese tattooing has always persevered, and is now internationally renowned for its artistry and historical symbolism.
Created and designed by Kip Fulbeck and curated by Takahiro Kitamura, Perseverance premiered at the Japanese American National Museum in 2014, breaking museum attendance records before traveling through the U.S. and overseas. An accompanying 200-page color catalog features hundreds of photos as well as essays by experts in the field. It opens at the Anchorage Museum in May, 2020.