Aloha, Baby

Here’s a sheet of tattoo flash that surfaced at an obscure auction. Story was that it originally came through a swap meet in Northern California, not sure what one but maybe the now defunct Marin City. Which was a very cool place where lots of hippies would set up selling stuff from wealthy guys like the Jefferson Airplane musicians. Phil Ochs widow was there a lot. Kind of sad actually but she had nice things for sale and was a nice person. A well heeled town with good items not just sand candles and yarn dream catchers but expensive bikes, early electronic gear and mint Bill Graham Fillmore posters.
Anyway the auctioneer said the guy who owned the sheet of flash remembered that he got it from Albert Morse. Mr. Morse was a famous comic book artists’ lawyer (don’t mention his name to comic book guys, as they will spit and fume.)  Unhappy dealings! They cry.

Albert Morse traveled the country and documented many tattooists. A hero in this world as he preserved history, wrote The Tattooists and had a great tattoo art show at the Oakland Museum of Art 25 years ago.  Brought tattoo panels out of back rooms onto museum walls and the public eye.  

We originally thought this piece might be Owen Jensen’s as the girl and peacock is something he drew occasionally.  But the fine line drawing just isn’t his.  It kind of looks Californian even though it says Aloha Hawaii. Beautifully done, it and now positively identified as an Earl Brown sheet.

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