Tattoo or taboo?



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And the small minded ignorance continues...

“(To say) tattooing is art is a bit of a stretch.” - what an ignorant, small minded statement, particularly given that tattooing and other forms of body art have been practiced by worldwide cultures for thousands of years.

“(Tattooing) has a place where it could be and should be,” Stoutenborough said. “I am opposed to having it in a high visibility area. It does have an effect on a town." Yes it would - that the area is recognizing the present and future. Body art is now hugely mainstream. This guy's mentality is obviously that tattooing is still relegated to sailors and the prison population. PLEASE.

Public opinion of Alton outside of Alton is that it is a dying small town area with little to offer in terms of attracting a modern, forward thinking demographic. This kind of commentary goes a long way to elevating that from opinion to fact.

Nick Nelson more than 1 year ago


Keep on thinking that more antique shops are the way to go old people of Alton. It's worked so well to turn the town around so far. Here's a hint, Alton is not, and will not likely ever be a tourist attraction. Get over this ridiculous idealized vision you have for the town and just attempt to make it decent again.

Ben more than 1 year ago

The board is worried about APPEARANCES?

As it stands, Alton is known regionally for Fast Eddie's, and the first thing a person sees driving across the bridge is The World's Ugliest Boat. Why would a legitimate tattoo parlor be any worse. I think a NICE tattoo parlor would be a great addition to the city. I don't have tattoos, nor do I plan on getting one due to an insurmountable needle aversion, but I have seen many classy, beautiful, and YES, artistic tattoos.

Nikki D. more than 1 year ago

Grand Piasa Body Art

Wow, does Alton need businesses??? I think so, cause all I see are vacant buildings crying for attention. I read the article, and he is in full compliance with the Madison County Health Department and a 5 star rating. The first business you see when you come into Alton is Johnny Vegas but that's okay. It's art whether you like it or not. Open your minds...

Cheryl Link more than 1 year ago


Have the Alton city council members ever visited our county courthouse? If so they would have also noticed a few tattoo shops along the way. Along with our county courthouse there are locally owned clothing boutiques, many large law offices, restaurants and many other businesses. I cant see where the tattoo shops have affected the city of Edwardsville negatively in any way. It is a thriving city.

jamie more than 1 year ago

Don't let Alton keep declining

You know, Alton has come a long way since I moved to Seattle 10 years ago. I want to laugh at how ridiculous this is, but I think I'd rather seethe over the poor decisions that have been made by the commission. If they keep blocking and rejecting great businesses like this, they're going to just speed the decline of the city I love. And honestly? I'd much rather see thriving businesses of ANY sort when you roll into town instead of neglected and abandoned buildings that have become the symbol for my dying hometown.

Vote with your voice, Alton. Council meetings are vastly interesting and it's a guaranteed way to start a fire of activism inside yourself and pride in your community. No one is going to improve your community for you. It's all up to you.

Carol more than 1 year ago

Art should be broader.

I am an artist and I live 3 blocks north of this location. I don't think that an upscale body art & tattoo shop would give the wrong impression. If Alton would like to see a thriving art district, then it really shouldn't pigeonhole itself into a "fine-art" only designation. I love fine art, but I also love creative expression of all types, from street dancing to galleries to indie folk music. And the upcoming generations are all about self expression, which has many faces, including body art. The key to making the Broadway corridor interesting is keeping a high standard of shops. And there is no reason why this one isn't. Plus, I would love a specialty art supply store.

Jenn more than 1 year ago

Grand Piasa Body Art

Maybe the forward-thinking members of the city council are waiting for someone to open a modern business in that space. Something along the lines of a rotary-phone manufacturing company, typewriter repair shop, cathode ray tube store or Myspace corporate headquarters. Its 2015, tattoos are not a "seedy" element in a town anymore, support this local business instead of choking them off and driving them away.

Chris Edler more than 1 year ago


You sir, are hilarious and amazing!

molly more than 1 year ago