It is the one of a kind in the world. It is a place where a brotherhood of 5 are working together in the tattoo and piercing industry. They are Alejandro (Ale), Pablo (Colo), Santiago (Santy), Leo and Sergio (Checho).
This incredible story started when the second elder brother Pablo left high school. At that time, he was only drawing and skating and had not yet made up his mind in what to do for a living. Life was hard, but he knew that he… to have an occupation related to drawing. A really good friend of his told him that working as a tattooer could be an option.
At that time, only 4 or 5 tattooers were working in Argentina. Argentinian tattoo culture was just started with major influences were from Native Culture from Northern Argentina. European culture came after native people were killed. So It took about 1 year to collect all the supplies he needed to start. He settle down in his own room to take up his activities. He didn’t know anyone to teach him how to tattoo and therefore taught himself tattooing. Then he met Vicente (from Barcelona & Buenos Aires) who was the really first to taught him the basics of tattooing. His first customers were relatives and friends. After 3 years working and self- training, he found out how to use pigments.
This is how Pablo Barada started his remarkable carrier some 30 years ago.
In 1991, he started to travel the world. All he wanted was to learn from others tattooers.
Filip Leu was the one how gave him the impulse he was expecting for. He was inspired by World famous artists and had the opportunity to meet them at the Hanky Panky’s Amsterdam Tattoo convention. Mick From Zurick, Tin Tin, Filip Leu and Horiyoshi III (tattooing with tebori on the floor) were there.
When he met Filip Leu for the first time in 1991, it felt like a revelation to him. Filip Leu was the only one who took time to give him some tips. He learn from him how make needles and how to use a machine… Watching and learning during few days with Filip Leu gave him fresh inspiration and helped him to develop his style.
For 5 years he was on the road and worked in various places like Madrid, Barcelona, Holland, Germany… Then he came to the USA where he met Chris Garver. Chris and Pablo had been working for tattoo parlors which were related to the Miami Ink franchise when they met in 1997. (King Cameron tattoo and also with Michelle, Lou’s Daughter).
Through all this year of learning and working, he developed his personal style of Japanese tattoo. He has always been fascinated by Japanese history and culture and though he has spent the last 30 years studying the Japanese style of Tattooing, he still claims he will never become a genuine Japanese tattoo Artist because as a non Japanese artist, it is impossible to master all aspects of Japanese art. Nonetheless, his ability to design Japanese tattoos is unique and exceptional.
Back in Quilmes, he worked with his Brother Santy. Santy had just left Hight school and didn’t know what to do for a living either. But he had natural skills for drawing and tattooing became a logical option. Both worked in their small room, Ale join the team and started selling supplies. Then he took up piercing. Ale was the first to think about opening a new place dedicated to the art of tattooing and piercing.
This is how, they opened the first Barada’s studio in Quilmes. It was really new because the shop was on the street. At that time, Tattoo shop were in Gallery. Their shop was the first in Quilmes, customers knew that good work was done there.
Some years later, Leo joined them. Following the path of his brothers, Leo had amazing painting and drawing skills on. For 10 years he watched his brothers tattooing and he literally grew up in a tattoo shop. Being tattooers was just normal and natural to him. He is now working and living for several years in Barcelona an Cadiz (Spain), where his art is well known in the country and Europe. He guests around the world in many places like Royal Tattoo with Henning and many others. Leo comes back once a year in Quilmes and spends time with his family at the Barada’s Tattoo shop where he paints most of the time, working on an amazing painting project with Pablo. You can find his art on the Kintaro Publishing Website (Link below).
Sergio, the youngest brother works as a piercer. With his elder brother Ale, they opened a private studio where people come from all over the country to be pierced.
They opened the new Barada’s Tattoo shop 4 years ago. It is in an 100 years old typical house where they chose to work in. With semi-open studios, they now have all the comfort needed to make customers comfortable. Working on appointments, they now can welcome customers for walk ins or future projects. The Barada’s team has expended and there you can meet there Pablo and Santy but also Matias Fornara and a wonderful apprentice Facundo Belen (follow him as he is bound to be a futur great artist). Completed with Mauro Inter (who works in part time for other studios) the team will provide you with Japanese tattoos but also any style you want. All of them keep working and learning hard to provide with you quality and solid tattoos.
For the last 7 years, the tattoo Business has developed a lot in Argentina. As tattoos has become more acceptable in public media, more different customers come in to get tattooed. There are now many shops on the street, but perfection is rare and Barada’s tattoo is one of the reference in Quilmes but also in Argentina and certainly in South America.
photos by ZOZIOS