Inkdigenous Tattoo, a Toronto-based tattoo studio, is fast becoming a hub for indigenous people to learn more about their own traditions while also offering non-indigenous people a chance to challenge stigma and stereotypes.
Everything about Inkdigenous Tattoo’s Moss Park studio pays homage to indigenous art, culture and traditions – from the paintings that adorn the wall, the traditional medicines that are sold through to the tattoo designs themselves.
Tattoo artist Toby Sicks opened Inkdigenous Tattoo last summer with the aim of spreading knowledge and appreciation of Indigenous culture to the people of Toronto.
A Métis from Hearst, Ontario, Toby Sicks has studied the effects of colonialism on Indigenous culture. He says: “Artwork holds stories that are based on culture and tradition. I learned a lot about my culture and traditions, and about my people and the atrocities that happened from colonialism.”
Toby Sicks collaborates with fellow indigenous artists at his tattoo studio. Nyle Miigizi Johnston is one of the shop’s tattoo artists who designs custom and flash pieces drawing on traditional Anishinaabe motifs. Many of his pieces can also be seen on paintings and merchandise for sale in the shop.
Rosa Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief @rosamedea