Prolific and notorious graffiti artist MQ has embarked on a new endeavor: tattooing. MQ, aka MQUE or MKUE, is now tackling this different art form, having painted graffiti in New York since the 1979. The writer has earned himself legendary status for nonstop painting in a multi-layered style, often combining stickers and reflective vinyl in his core color scheme of black and silver to produce his signature block or bubble letters.
MQ is currently in Japan to do work on the human body, taking up a temporary residence in Tokyo’s Have A Good Time Shop until next Tuesday, March 26.
FRANK spoke with MQ about his opinions on Japan and the difference between painting the wall and inking some skin.
How long have you been tattooing and how did you get into it in the first place?
I did one of my first tattoos in the early ’90s on Freddy of MadBall. I did his last name on his stomach. I really didn’t do much after, but I just got back into it about ten months ago. I figured I needed other ways to make money. I never had a job, I never used my social security for anything, ever! I’ve been racking shit my whole life and it can be very stressful, especially when I have a family to support. It was easier to hustle when I was solo, on every level—not anymore.
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