After publishing a few posts about prison tattoos (here, here and here) Klaus Pichler emailed me to tell me about his project ‘Inked for Life: The World of Prison Tattoos‘:

I am a landscape architect and I am currently researching the exercise yards of Austrian prisons, in both spatial and sociological approaches. I am also a photographer.

Inked for Life: The World of Prison Tattoos‘ deals with the art of tattooing in the prisons of Central Europe, from the 1950s through to the 1980s.

I am surely not the first one who has done a project about this topic, but the Central European tradition of prison tattooing is genuinely different from the North American, the Latin American and also the Russian/Eastern European style of tattooing.

I have worked more than seven years on this project, and it will be published as a book in late 2010. The project consists of pictures and excerpts of interviews with (mostly) ex-inmates, about tattooing, prison life and prison culture.

I am assuming it is because the book is imminent that Klaus did not provide me jpegs from the Inked for Life series. Klaus did, however, send over these four images from Skeletons in the Closet.

Skeletons in the Closet goes into the long list of photo-projects adopting a distancing view of stores/archives/displays/dioramas of natural history museums, albeit one of the better projects of that ilk … of that trend.

Klaus Pichler‘s entire portfolio is worth a look but I think his studies of people, nay characters, in his Odessa series are particularly good … very good.

So please look at those people shortly after looking at these dead animals!