Mike Davis' first tattoo is an old design off a piece of Indian pottery. When I asked him, he pointed to his upper right arm, described it, and gave this smile, like yeah, I wanted a tattoo and that seemed right. Because of his interest in history, period art, old movies, etc I was expecting his response to be more detailed and elaborate. But he is more likely to show things than explain them.
I recently met Mike at White Walls, for his latest solo show in San Francisco. He's shown at White Walls three times now among other galleries such as: 111 Minna, Canvas Gallery, Laguna Art Museum, and in New York for the inaugural show at Joshua Liner Gallery. He is self trained and paints out of love for art. He paints daily and getting some good money back. Most of his art maintains a semblance of Danish and Flemish painters. They are creepy, setting a dark mood, with little surprises and puzzles throughout. While his paintings maintain the older form, their content is changed and challenges your expectations.
After moving to California from Ohio he began working at Everlasting Tattoo under Aarron Kane. Kane is now living elsewhere and Mike has taken over this now nationally known tattoo shop. Much of his tattoo art contains the lines and shading seen in his fine art.
Mike's work reminds me of the inner intentions people possess, mostly the darker ones we often try to hide. Which I would rather see than images that are pleasant and easy to accept.