A tradition engraved in the DNA, which led Henk Schiffmacher, one of the world’s most famous tattoo artists, to give life to a project where his creativity as a tattoo artist is expressed in a powerful and beautiful way on a totally different support: the knives.
“I grew up with the sound of the knives, my father was a butcher, my grandfather was a butcher… They were butchers all the way from Napoleon. We grew up with knives and with butchering.
Not only the handles but also the blades become a support that Henk makes unique decorating them with designs inspired from the Polynesian style. Different inspirations from different Islands, there are Micronesian and Melanisian elements where the lines play with the shape of the blade creating real collection items.
As a Dutch butcher’s son, Henk learned to appreciate a good, sturdy knife at an early age. In this series he shows his passion for the butcher’s trade, for tattoos and the cuisine.
Steak Knives By Schiffmacher
The set consists in four robust steak knives, each with a unique and recognizable pattern. Natural wood provides an authentic appearance – no knife is the same. To embrace this authenticity, each knife has its own tattoo designed by Henk Schiffmacher himself, and his trademark, the pirate skull.
Chef’s Knife By Schiffmacher
This chef’s knife is made from one piece of solid German stainless steel, blackened with a special iron oxide treatment. And it wouldn’t be a knife by Schiffmacher without a tattoo, right?
Chopping Block By Schiffmacher
When it comes to cooking, having the right cutting board is just as important as having a good knife. This cutting board is inspired by the official butcher’s block, as Schiffmacher knew it from his childhood. On the side there is the writing CUT HERE, which has an interesting meaning in tattooing, a sort of “Let there be no mistake”.
What’s next? THE MAN’S RUIN SET
“We had a very old plan, which is one of my favourite tattoos ever. It’s called the ‘Man’s Ruin’ and the man’s ruin is the rulification of men, which means, the temptations of a man’s life: it has to do with gambling, with drinking, with fighting, with smoking. And a knife is often part of a man’s ruin”.
So the “Man’s ruin” knife was made. A pocket knife with a very ingenious little lock. A daily tool for everyday use. The knife is also part of a complete set with the man’s ruin drawing, inspired by early Danish tattoos. The full set includes a Zippo, a collectors item, of course the knife and a little hip flask, to keep you awake, and wake you up!
So you have the smoking, the drinking, the fighting. And the gambling part, for which Henk redrew a set of playing cards in jailhouse style. And for the people who don’t like smoke there is the same set without the Zippo.