Mo Coppoletta: "If you want to succeed in tattooing, you need to breathe, eat, drink and smell tattooing."

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

One of the world’s most respected tattoo artists shares his inspiration and an insight into his work in the new book ‘Tattooed By The Family Business’.

He established his tattoo parlour in 2003 in the heart of London with the aim of creating a new setting for tattoo enthusiasts. Having built an enviable reputation within the industry, he’s now revealed images of his work and studio, as well as testimonials from clients.

Singer Paloma Faith said “I've known Mo for a while, actually, my friend worked as a receptionist at the Family Business, so I knew his work, knew how good he is. When I decided to get a tattoo I wanted only him to do it, even though he's in such a huge demand that it is a long really long wait, because of the fact that it is forever, and I wanted something that could age with me.”

"The Master Tattooist" is a new exhibition by Jack Vettriano which contains imagery from the book created by Italian photographer Fredi Marcarini. The two met during a magazine shoot for Italian magazine, Monsieur, and have since collaborated on several projects, including pieces which inspired the work in Vettriano’s exhibition, Days of Wine and Roses.

Vettriano said “I’ve always been attracted to the retro appeal of tattoos. To me there’s something so romantic about the commitment a person makes in having the name of a loved one, a place or even an idea inscribed, forever, on their bodies. We literally wear our heart on our sleeves.”

“A tattoo is a poetic and artistic creation and a truly great tattoo can only be created by a true artist. It was a great privilege for me to have mine created by Mo Coppoletta, who is first of all an artist and then a master tattooist.”

“Wander into The Family Business and you have entered an artist’s studio; the walls adorned with drawings and paintings; memorabilia and found objects scattered around; the music playing only partially masking the incessant buzzing of the tattoo machines, a soundtrack that just adds to the experience. It’s a melting pot of creativity in there; sights, sounds and smells all around you, stimulating all your senses but the moment you surrender to your artist, the experience becomes oddly private, calm and intimate between just the two of you. Choose your artist with care.”

Photographer Marcarini also commented on the precision of Coppoletta’s work:

“Unusually for a tattoo artist, Mo looks like a “regular” guy, he could be an architect, or a tax lawyer, one would never bet his real profession. But when he wears his glasses and his gloves and start carving a skin, he has that look of seriousness and attention of the artist for the work he is attending to. I studied his expression on the many pictures I shot of him while he was working, the movement of his hand, the marvel of the colours of the drawing, the satisfied look on his face when cleaning the finished job, and I could see the different faces of the artist, the manager, the business man, and the interesting and amusing man when outside the parlour.”

Their aim is to reflect the status of the tattoo as a truly twenty-first century art form, and the exhibition will be displayed at Heartbreak, a new gallery opening in Marylebone, London from the 16th September.

Click here or on the image to view a selection of the images from the exhibition

Arts and Entertainment
Shades of glory: Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend

Glastonbury Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend will perform with Paul Weller as their warm-up act

Arts and Entertainment
Billie Piper as Brona in Penny Dreadful
tvReview: It’s business as usual in Victorian London. Let’s hope that changes as we get further into the new series spoiler alert
Arts and Entertainment
No Offence
tvReview: No Offence has characters who are larger than life and yet somehow completely true to life at the same time spoiler alert
Arts and Entertainment
The Queen (Kristin Scott Thomas) in The Audience
theatreReview: Stephen Daldry's direction is crisp in perfectly-timed revival
Arts and Entertainment

Will Poulter will play the shape-shifting monsterfilm
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

    Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

    He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
    General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

    On the margins

    From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
    Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

    'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

    Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
    Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

    Why patients must rely less on doctors

    Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
    Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

    Flesh in Venice

    Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
    11 best anti-ageing day creams

    11 best anti-ageing day creams

    Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
    Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

    Juventus vs Real Madrid

    Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants
    Ashes 2015: Test series looks a lost cause for England... whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket

    Ashes series looks a lost cause for England...

    Whoever takes over as ECB director of cricket, says Stephen Brenkley
    Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

    Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

    Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

    Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

    Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
    China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

    China's influence on fashion

    At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
    Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

    The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

    Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
    Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

    Rainbow shades

    It's all bright on the night
    'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

    Bread from heaven

    Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
    Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

    How 'the Axe' helped Labour

    UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power