Antoine Larrey     
Interview.

Published Summer 2016
Quo Vadis




Between Antoine’s (trademark) illusionary skulls, scantily-clad female figures and timelessly painted jackets lies a style and approach borrowing evenly from the pools of bold asian, folk and graphic art. I’ve been following Antoine’s work since he began working at Sang Bleu, and have always been a fan of the way his work communicates a boldness that remains so malleable and yet so striking within its range of manifestations on the skin, fabric and paper.

What’s the worst job that you had before being a tattooer? I’ve done a lot of minimum wage jobs to pay for rent during my studies, none of which were exciting. In what ways has your style changed since you began tattooingI’ve only been tattooing professionally for about a year and a half, so I’m still scratching my head daily to figure out my “style”. Recently I’ve been focusing more on placement and scale, working with the flow of the body. What makes an ideal customer? Someone that is open to different options. What do you need the most, right now? To immerse myself in work and get new ideas flowing. Do you have a vice? Cashews. Do you think apprenticeships are still important in producing a well rounded artist? I didn’t do one so I’m not in the best position to advocate apprenticeships, but I’d say it can be helpful in the sense of transmitting a respect for the history and tradition of tattooing. But as always in life there are other ways. If you’re curious and passionate enough, spend time in shops getting tattooed, you can build a significant understanding of the heritage as well. I’m not a fan of set rules. What three pieces (by any tattooers) stick out in your mind as being particularly unforgettable or groundbreaking? The history of tattooing is so rich and vast that it’s virtually impossible to just pinpoint three pieces. Instead I’ll say that three pieces that are important to me personally are the first tattoo I got (by Liam Sparkes in 2010), the first tattoo I did (on myself in 2014) and the last tattoo I did. What album could you not live without owning? “Kisou” by Dir en grey. What fastfood is most likely to be bought by you? French fries and too much ketchup. If you could be an animal for a day, what would you be? My cat Coyote. What has tattooing taught you? To get back on the horse. If you had to be exiled to another planet, what one would you choose? Namek. How important is collaboration to you as a tattooer? It’s not, I’m a control freak. What are Sundays best spent doing? Eating, sleeping and drinking red wine with my girlfriend. How do you imagine yourself living out your last years (of retirement)? Tattooing in my small studio or looking for food on post-apocalyptic Earth.