Stick your arm in a hole and get a free mystery tattoo

Written by
Rosie Percy

A photo posted by Chris Swainston (@swainstagram) on

Would you let someone tattoo you without you knowing what it was? Unlike the usual tattoo queries of 'did it hurt?' and 'but what does it mean?' from inquisitive friends and angry parents, this question comes as world-renowned tattoo artist Scott Campbell lands in London.

Campbell is re-staging his 'Whole Glory' installation in Covent Garden this October after holding it at Milk Studios in New York, where he inked strangers via a hole in the wall with no communication on what he'd do. 

Tattoos are usually a culmination of months of thought (or a mad one in Magaluf), so sticking your arm in a hole and handing yourself over to the mercy of a needle without knowing what will happen on the other side takes a lot of guts. So why should you do it? As Scott Campbell says:

'It's a chance for people to not take their physical selves so seriously, and take part in an exchange of faith that will literally change who they are for the rest of their life.'

For a project with such huge potential for disaster, so far it seems successful. Of the 23 people he inked in New York, everyone seems happy with what they got. 

And if you're going to trust anyone to ink your skin without your input, it's probably Scott. He's tattooed the likes of Robert Downey Jr, Marc Jacobs, Penelope Cruz and Heath Ledger – so you're in good hands. 

Feeling brave? Tattoo slots will be given away via a random lottery draw every day of the installation, so grab a Lucozade and get in line.

There will also be a collection of tattooed 'patchwork quilt' pig skins on display, for those who want to admire Scott's work without going under the needle. 

'Whole Glory' is presented by Lazarides at 26 Henrietta Street, WC2E 8NA, from October 7-9. Six lottery slots will be drawn throughout the day, starting at 10am.


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