The Residencies: Delphin Musquet
Introducing The Residencies, our brand new service which brings the experts to you, offering private appointments both online and in-person with some of the world’s leading authorities in style, health, wellbeing and more. Here we meet Delphin Musquet, one of London’s most sought-after tattoo artists who honed his skills at Hackney’s iconic Sang Bleu studio. Now bringing his skilful artistry to Browns Brook Street as our new Resident tattoo artist, we learn more about the enigmatic Frenchman...
Can you tell us about your journey into tattooing?
I started about four years ago. I bought a tattoo machine to tattoo myself and since then I haven’t stopped.
How would you describe your tattooing style and what are your main influences? Is there a creative synergy between the way you dress and the way you tattoo?
I’m trying to produce a type of art that won’t age or be affected by trends; a timeless approach. I like to compare my ideas with architecture. When you look at old buildings from the Victorian times, these buildings will never go out of style. I’m trying to reproduce the same feeling with my art and my clothes. With clothes, I don't pay attention to any fashion trends. I often cut pieces myself to make them fit how I like.
My “Sans Patrie” project [a tattoo and clothing aesthetic] was founded on the designs of French prison tattoo culture and the look of French workers. It’s inspired a lot by French and English clothing from the 50s. French prison art was born within the convicts at the beginning of the 20th century, so the art was really raw, but also poetic.
You’ve tattooed in different cities around the world – what has this taught you about your practice and what lessons have you learned?
I always say that travelling is food for the brain and the spirit. It teaches you so many lessons. It has the ability to break the daily routine you unintentionally create and take you into new surroundings and experiences, resetting your body and mind. It boosts my happiness which reduces my stress and expands my mind!
When did you first arrive in London and what attracted you to the city?
I’ve been here for nine years. I moved here to discover myself and come back with some good stories. I’ve just never left (laughs). London has so many opportunities on offer that I’ve never felt moving anywhere else.
As a Frenchman, what kind of Gallic influences did you bring with you?
The ones in myself are enough! French personalities are so different from British ones. In France we're really honest and we say things directly. We don't skirt around our opinions by using sarcasm or any other tricks.
When someone comes to you for a tattoo, what are the first questions you ask them?
Three simple words: placement, size and photo reference. Then we can start talking more in detail and begin understanding one another.
What are the ethical codes you stand by?
There are a lot but in general just being human, honest and considerate. We all depend on each other and our decisions will affect each one of us.
How do you persuade someone against getting a terrible tattoo, or a design they might later regret?
I would definitely try to be as nice as possible and talkative, and try to gain their trust with my professional expertise. But to be honest I don’t do that often; people have the right to make their own mistakes in order to learn. I would just not tattoo something I don't want to do.
What are you most excited about for your Residency at Browns?
I think it’s going to be interesting for both parties to learn from each other and to allow clients to be in such a fantastic universe that unites fashion and tattoo artistry. As they are both something that people wear, it makes sense to unify both worlds by offering luxury clothing and tattoos.
Delphin will be in residence at The Parlour at Browns Brook Street exclusively for two weekends only on May 1st-2nd and May 15th-16th.
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