Australia has a long, storied history of gifting amazing culture to the rest of the world. From the land that brought you Yahoo Serious, Frenzal Rhomb, and that movie about those girls going on a picnic, comes the insanely colorful (and immensely sexual) work of tattoo artist Onnie O'Leary. Her vibrant pieces, comprised of vivid colors and bold lines, bring to mind the works of the best early/mid ‘90's comic illustrators. Just imagine a pornographic Uncanny X-Men (google that at your own risk) and you kind of get the idea.
But, unlike most x-rated tattoos, the sexuality portrayed in her images isn’t cheap or pornographic. O’Leary’s work often features imagery of sexually empowered females. Her art frequently shifts the submissive role onto males. It is refreshing to see erotic tattoos that don’t objectify females as mere sex objects, but rather portray them as being strong and powerful. Indeed, a word I would pick to describe the women in O’Leary’s body of work would be “dangerous.”
The most striking thing about many of O’Leary’s tattoos is the ways in which they interact with sci-fi imagery. Aliens, spacewomen, witches, robots, and warrior goddesses all show up in her portfolio. The results look like a better version of the images found in classic issues of Heavy Metal. Luckily the images O’Leary creates go directly on human flesh, there’s no need to worry about newsprint getting all over your sweaty fingers!
Onnie O’Leary will be making an appearance at the world famous Australian Tattoo Expo in Sydney from March 10 to the 12. Her larger appointments are booked up, but she will have prints and stickers available, and she hopes to have some time for flash.
O’Leary is often not content to be constrained to the Land Down Under. She frequently travels the world as a guest artist, which is something that could save you a considerable amount in airfare if you’re lusting after adding one of her unique pieces for your own canvas of flesh.
Truly, Onnie O'Leary is a breath of fresh air in a world of unimaginative, poorly executed tattoos of breasts and genitals. For more of her amazing work, check out Onnie's instagram.