One thing unique to all humans living on the face of the planet is that we alter our appearances. We cut our hair, we wear clothes, we dress in certain styles for special occasions. No other animal on the planet spends it's life altering it's natural appearance. In the broadest sense, that is body art. In a more practical sense, body art includes tattooing, piercing, body painting, body shaping, hair styling, and lots of other permanent and semi-permanent practices.
If you are looking for body art information in general, this is a pretty good place to start. A good place to start exploring body art is with the temporary forms: henna, body painting, jewelry, hair dressing, fingernails/nail-painting, temporary (painted) tattoos and bindi (forehead dots).
Below are a variety of references which can provide information and introduction to many forms of body art. There are academic reports, historical references, fiction and nonfiction. Add some color to your life and bookshelf!
BODY ART BOOK CLUB
This is a selected monthly title, either fiction or non-fiction, that relates to body art. This could include tattoo history books, photo books, writing about body art and stories that feature tattooing and piercing. The Book Club will cover non-fiction titles in odd numbered months and fiction titles in even-numbered months. To view the latest book, or preview next month, please visit the Book Club Homepage.
You can also explore body art books on the following topics:
- Body Art eBooks
These are downloadable PDF booklets, written by the Bella Body Art editor in response to popular topics and requests. Including nose piercing, henna body painting and star tattoos.
- Circus Freaks and Sideshows
Step right up and see the the spectacle! Circuses used to travel with a ten-in-one, a group of smaller acts. This was called the sideshow, but as the exhibits became more outrageous, it came to be known as the freak show.
- Japanese Tattoo Books
The Japanese culture has a very distinctive tattoo style and it has been a popular influence on Western tattooing since the 1960s. Explore the distinctive history of this highly developed tattoo style.
- Tattoo Flash Books
Here is a series of tattoo flash books from artist J.D. Crowe. These are books of tattoo designs that you can use or adapt for your own skin art.
- Tattoo Magazines
See the latest in skin art each month with tattoo magazines. Get convention coverage, artist interviews, collector features, and hundreds and hundreds of full-color tattoo pictures.
- Tribal Tattoo History
Traditional tribal tattooing was worn by peoples all along the Pacific Rim and throughout Southeast Asia. The designs were almost always monochrome, and executed by hand tattooing methods.