Dear Shaded Viewers,
I had the pleasure of meeting Mr. Coppoletta, the famed tattoo artist. He was in Milan to announce and present a special collaboration with Savile Club, a bespoke tailoring brand and Sacs, known for his well-designed yachts, boats and rubber boats. Unusually for a tattoo artist, Mo looks like a “regular” guy, dressed in a mint leather jacket with a classic cut, tailored pants, brogues and a silk printed cache-col. You could spot he is a creative person, you could think he is maybe an architect, or a visual artist, a typical situation where you can't really judge a book by its cover. Under this gentlman's attire there is one of the refinest tattoer of all times, that established his parlour “The Family Business” in 2003 in the heart of London. Originally from Verona he found in London his new home with the aim of creating a new setting for tattoo enthusiasts. If you ask Mo what is his personal concept for the 50’s style shop he has in Exmouth Market, it’s pretty simple “gothic Victorian, magic, hocus pocus and Sweeney Todd." We sat with the stylish Skin’s magician (even if he prefers the term butcher) to talk about his latest design venture.
How did you begin your collaborations with the world of design, artists and fashion brands?
It really happened by chance. I started to become popular and I got to know many people, showing my work, asking for collaborations. One morning I opened the email and there they were: a lot of various requests. I have always accepted only those most congenial to me. I chose the moment, I let my instinct speak for me. I take out my pencil and set my imagination free. Over these years the portfolio has become more and more interesting. I had the pleasure to work with Damien Hirst, The Prodigy, Romain Jerome and Liberty of London for a capsule collection of textiles.
What was your 1st major collaboration?
I would say that the most special was with Liberty: a professional good exercise. I designed three patterns which were then declined in fifty fabrics including silks and cottons. I really love a repeatition of motifs, the fabric is in 2D the skin instead is in 3D, therefore I had to learn how to combine two different languages, to follow the textiles surfaces and design for them has been an incredible experience.
What inspires most of all, your creative projects?
All my work, in fact, has a storytelling to really impressive shoulders: no design nor do I ever chance: behind each pattern there is always a reason, a reason of inspiration, a reason that moves it.
You did a collaboration with Savile Company for Sacs boats, why boats?
The world of the boats and rafts is a world that has always fascinated me a lot: the customization is a very important trend on the rise because it’s a territory where innovation is possible, research is essential and it’s truly the ultimate luxury. Once you could maybe only play with colors, now there is a wide range of fabrics, patterns to be drawn on the tubes, graphic effects to experience and of course in this case tattoos. I will actively start to work more in Milan in collaboration with Savile Company, not only to custom their clothing and accessories collection but to start to expand my collaborations here in Italy.
The last question: what is it for you, today real luxury?
I would say that luxury is no longer connected to a brand or an iconic item. Luxury is personal is an ongoing research, a personal research that can not be helped by anyone but yourself. It requires time, experience and expectation, as I believe our taste is refined with exercise and time. It’s also important to be authentic and true to yourself, and of course how much money you are willing to spend to achieve that little thing that makes you feel special. Luxury also means to give life to your client's desires.