Jessie Knight: The First British Female Tattoo Artist
August 13, 2018 - Charlotte Prichard
To celebrate the exhibition "Tattoo: British Tattoo Art Revealed," we’ve teamed up with National Maritime Museum Cornwall to create two brand NEW and EXCLUSIVE designs. Inspired by the incredible Jessie Knight, the FIRST British female tattoo artist, Jessie was a true icon to many for breaking the glass ceiling and making it possible for women to become tattooists.
Born in 1904, Jessie Knight was a radical pioneer. The daughter of a sailor-turned-circus star and one of the most famous tattoo artists of the early 20th century, Jessie was a trailblazer during a time where tattoos had a questionable reputation, especially on women!
Jessie moved on from being her father’s sharpshooter dummy, to a circus stuntwoman, bareback horse rider, and pistol-spinning markswoman. By the age of 18, she was tattooing for a living on clients from across the world.
We LOVE this super inspiring photo of Jessie tattooing another woman during World War II - breaking down those gender barriers!
You can learn more about Jessie Knight and other Tattooing Legends at the exhibit "Tattoo: British Tattoo Art Revealed" at the National Maritime Museum Cornwall from 17 March 2017 until 7 January 2018.
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