Former RVA tattoo artist finds success at Miami international art show

by | Dec 10, 2015 | ART

“I’m constantly trying to bridge the gap between so-called Fine Art and tattooing,” Thea Duskin of Ghostprint Gallery said of her long praised work

“I’m constantly trying to bridge the gap between so-called Fine Art and tattooing,” Thea Duskin of Ghostprint Gallery said of her long praised work who spend this past weekend in Miami as part of Aqua Art Miami.

Aqua Art Miami, billed as an international contemporary art fair, aims to attract “increasingly diverse and distinguished exhibitors while retaining the fair’s signature relaxed vibe and lively energy.”

And according to Duskin, her intricate and ethereal free-hand tattoo work made a successful appearance at the event. Duskin was one out of dozens of artists to exhibit their works throughout the festival.

“This [was] my first year exhibiting at Aqua rather than representing other artists. We [showed] art photography of completed tattoos (collaborating with local photographers, notably Kim Frost) and original mixed-media watercolor and collage,” Duskin said. “These paintings function both as works of art and potential tattoos and allow me to introduce more stylistic variation into my work.”

Duskin’s technique incorporates painterly looking strokes and zero outlines giving each of her watercolors and tattoos a mixed media effect–creating mesmerizing and fluidly free-hand pieces. Duskin’s work also invites intrigue as many of her fine pieces exude botanical and sweet feminine idols that emphasize her free-hand style (birds, winged insects).

Freshly tattooed flower bird for Annie

A photo posted by Thea Duskin (@theaduskin) on

A number of her mixed-media works sold to the 21st Century Museum Hotels group by the weekend’s end, so Duskin’s work could be displayed along the hallways of the modern hotel chain.

“While it’s always a pleasure to work with clients, this exhibition [gave] me the opportunity to art direct more freely since clients are choosing from already completed works,” Duskin said. “It also allowed me to live tattoo a performance piece which is unique because I usually don’t get to tattoo in front of people.”

With a body being her primary canvas, Duskin’s success branches from the roots of Richmond subcultures towards the larger realm of fine art. Being a co-curator of Ghostprint Gallery in Scott’s Addition has further helped her gain acclaim in the realm of fine arts and buying.

“The gallery has partially contributed to my success by bringing in a different audience that usually wouldn’t be exposed to tattooing,” Duskin said. ”As part of Ghostprint I always find inspiration seeing the work of other artists, but I wouldn’t say it has altered my style.”

While Duskin has since moved to Buffalo, NY, be sure to keep up with her on instagram here, as she seems to be bridging that gap between Fine Arts and Tattooing to the flesh.

Brad Kutner

Brad Kutner




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