Chamblin’s Uptown is taking the theme of July's First Wednesday Art Walk — "Body and Wellness" — literally.
The Downtown Jacksonville bookstore is hosting the BodyArt Walk Tattoo Fashion Show July 3. Jennifer O’Donnell, the store's manager, came up with idea.
“We are promoting Art Walk and just trying to bring more people Downtown — more people and more diversity and maybe people who never usually come down for Art Walk," O’Donnell said. "We want to celebrate the tattooists as artists and the tattoos as art, because they are."
Chamblin’s has rented a cat walk to place in front of Snyder Memorial Church on Laura Street where those who wish to participate can strut their stuff. Those with tattoos are welcome to participate, no matter the size, color, placement or design. For those without tattoos, henna and body paint artists will be available. If you wish to participate in the BodyArt Walk, call 674-0868 by 5 p.m. July 3 to register.
Spectators at the fashion show will help pick the winners, who will receive gift cards from local downtown businesses, including Chamblin's Uptown, Strght & Nrrw and Icon Boutique. Participants will walk the cat walk while emcee Wayne Wood, a genuine renaissance man and founder of Riverside Arts Market, highlights their body art.
“When Jennifer told me about the BodyArt Walk, I said it was a great idea, and that it would give an extra spark to the monthly Art Walk," Wood said. "It would be a new celebration of art that is not celebrated often.”
As of June 28, 45 people had signed up to participate.
“We are hoping to get 100 — at least!” O’Donnell said.
Local bands Fathom Sphere and Memphibians will perform. A photographer will shoot pictures of the participants and their ink, and the photos will be displayed in various businesses and restaurants Downtown. Dancers, hula-hoopers, a fire show and more will keep the event lively.
“Downtown Jax has a lot of different types of people and businesses — all different and diverse," O'Donnell said. "We want to celebrate difference and want people to know that not all successful people wear suits."