Who Did Your Ink? is the Straight’s weekly feature, where we ask badass Vancouverites about the talented artists, indelible stories, and, at times, questionable antics behind their most treasured tattoos.
What’s your name? Chris Bentzen.
What do you do? I’m the owner of Hot Art Wet City gallery, and sometimes artist and graphic designer.
Who did your ink? To be honest, I don’t remember everyone that’s tattooed me over the past 20-plus years. My biggest pieces are from Joshua Johnson when he was at Next (1068 Granville Street); Nomi Chi at Gastown Tattoo Parlour (105 West Cordova Street); Katie So and Daniel Giantomaso at Black Medicine Tattoo (441 Gore Street); Shannon Elliott; Terry at Osmosis Tattoo & Piercing (6631 Buswell Street, Richmond); Thomas Lockhart at Westcoast Tattoo (2108 East Hastings Street); a few from artists that worked at Sacred Heart Tattoo (25 West 6th Avenue); and a few more whom I don’t remember their names (or even where they worked).
Why did you choose these artists to do your tattoos? I choose based on their style and their portfolio. Sometimes, based on their availability, location, or what flash they had available.
Is there any meaning behind them? I have a few memorial tattoos and those have meaning. My sleeves tell a story of dystopia and utopia. My chest appears to have a story, but I haven’t figured it out yet. Lately, I’m just giving artists a few ideas and letting them do whatever they want… or getting flash.
Who’s your favourite local tattoo artist? Nomi Chi.
What’s next on your ink list? Joel Rich at Black Medicine is tattooing a tiger on my leg soon.