Shanghai Kate dropped on by the studio today and as always it was an honor for her to come through. Shanghai Kate is known to many as  America’s Tattoo Godmother. She’s been putting down the ink since ’71 and has worked alongside the industries best influencers and tastemakers. From Sailor Jerry Collins, Ed Hardy, Zeke Owen, and Jack Rudy just to name a few, she’s made her moves in this industry and forged her importance and influence through how she’s helped push our industry forward.



If you don’t know who she is, then get familiar. Shanghai Kate in an icon of our industry and a pioneer in the world of tattoos. She started tattooing back in ’71 and since then her contributions to the tattoo community are plentiful. 

She was instrumental in helping make tattoos a recognized art form, and she’s worked with some of the industries most respected artists such as Sailor Jerry Collins, Paul Rogers, Ed Hardy and more.  

During her work at an NYC ad agency, she was doing research on the underground world of tattooing in Manhattan with Michael Malone, when she was hired by the Museum of American Folk Art to help curate the contemporary section of the exhibit, “Tattoo.” This was not just any ordinary show as it was the first time that tattooing had been displayed on the walls of any museum.  We could go on about her contributions to the tattoo community but that would require thousands of words alone, so we’ll save that for a future post and interview. In the meantime, we just wanted to thank our sister Shanghai Kate for stopping by.

Much Respect,

Robert Pho 

Shanghai Kate talking to Fernie Andrade

Shanghai Kate talking to Fernie Andrade

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