Tattooing and seafaring have always been linked.
And now an exhibition of nautical and prison tattoos will pop up in an especially fitting location as part of Cork Harbour Festival.
Cork’s largest celebration of maritime culture and heritage returns from June 3rd-13th, 2022 with over 50 events in 15 stunning locations throughout Cork City and Cork Harbour.
One of the most intriguing, Hold Fast, an exhibition by Seán Hanrahan with Backwater Artists, will take place in the former Punishment Block cells at Spike Island.
The exhibition takes its name from a phrase that eased the minds of superstitious sailors, who believed that having it inscribed across their knuckles would ward off bad luck at sea. Other common tattoos include the swallow, which once represented every 5000 miles a sailor had voyaged.
Hold Fast is one of a number of fascinating events that will take place all over the city during the festival.
Cobh-based a-cappella ‘buoy band’ The Mologoggers will perform both traditional and new sea shanties in the beautiful Goldie Chapel in Nano Nagle Place on June 4th and you can join Sea and Land Trust and Clean Coasts in Blackrock for shoreline clean-ups on June 6th and 11th.
Aquatic biologist Frances Gallagher will be giving a Seaweed Talk on June 5th. Afterwards, you can learn about identifying edible seaweed and forage on the beach. For the full programme, visit corkharbourfestival.com.