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Anyone who has been keeping up with the news throughout this week knows that things have been really bad in the United Kingdom. Rioters have burned, trashed, smashed and looted their way throughout London, with more riots spreading to places like Birmingham and Manchester. What started off as a peaceful protest against the police killing of a black taxi driver in London’s Tottenham district has ballooned into war zones in the streets, with the political and social concerns of the initial protesters being replaced by teenage thugs and chavs randomly smashing windows, looting and attacking people just for the hell of it.
Throughout all this chaos, many small business owners have suffered as a result of the looting and vandalism. So I wasn’t too surprised when I saw that even tattoo artist Louis Molloy has been affected by the turmoil. Some of you may know of Louis Molloy as he seems to be the go to guy for celebrity tattoos in England. He’s tattooed David Beckham, several members of the Spice Girls and boxer Ricky Hatton, to name but a few. Molloy was all set to open an exhibit of his tattoo work tomorrow at the Generation Pop gallery in Manchester, but the exhibit has now been postponed to September 22 because the windows of the gallery were kicked in during the riots.
‘It is ironic that an exhibition which would have embodied the new wave of enthusiasm and respect that tattoo art can command was victim to mindless criminality.
Anthony Marks, Generation Pop’s owner, said: “We have been preparing for this exhibition for months with it shaping up to be a big event for the gallery and Manchester. The gallery itself suffered only minor damage compared to some of the other destruction we have seen. It is the right thing to do to postpone until 22 September.”’
Bad luck for Molloy and all the people who worked hard to get the show off the ground, but it’s a terrible situation all around as far as the riots are concerned. At least the exhibit will have a second chance to go on and Molloy will always be able to showcase his art, no problem. However, I can’t help but wonder when the dust finally settles on all this, how many small business owners including tattooists will be left with massive bills to pay.