Horace Bristol's Amazing Series of 1940's Japanese Tattoo Culture
A few nights ago, we stumbled upon these incredible photos of Horace Bristol's documentation of 1940's Japanese Tattoo Culture and Yakuza baths via the Vintage Tattoo Archive. Known for his work at LIFE magazine, Bristol had been in Japan after WWII, and one of his projects was documenting Japanese tattoo art, which obviously led him to capturing some amazing scenes of underground culture. From our research, many of his photos are of Yakuza gang members in Tokyo getting these incredible works done.
According to Wikipedia, "In 1936, Bristol became a part of Life's founding photographers, and in 1938, began to document migrant farmers in California's central valley with John Steinbeck, recording the Great Depression, photographs that would later be called the Grapes of Wrath collection... In 1941, Bristol was recruited to the U.S. Naval Aviation Photographic Unit, as one of six photographers under the command of Captain Edward J. Steichen, documenting World War II in places such as South Africa, and Japan. Bristol helped to document the invasions of North Africa, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa."