They say cats have nine lives, but I'm ready to conquer the world with just one. One paw at a time

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This yearbook brings together twenty creatives and community organisers from all walks of life: musicians, visual artists, dancers, art collectives, and everything in between. From personal to political, their contributions reflect diverse forms of community-building through care. How do they inspire each other? Who do they care for? How do they care? 💘

  • Name: Tacha
  • Creative/Tattoo artist
  • Pronouns: she/her
  • Age: 27
  • Location: Brussels
  • Instagram: @naughtttycaat

What do you care most about, and how is it relevant to your art/practice? It could be a social issue, your community, yourself, or anything! 

I think that inner peace is the thing I would like to have all the time and that it is accessible and easy for everyone. Living in a stressful society, even when you have all the keys to practice and experience it, it seems very difficult to be constantly at peace with yourself. What I have found most revealing about my art practice is the silence and focus I can have while tattooing. It's a confidence boost and I feel like I'm meditating at the same time. It's like unlocking something in my brain and I'm happy to share that moment with someone during the session. 

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Three words that come to mind when you hear the term ‘care’? 


What inspires you to care more for others, or to use your art/practice as a platform to do so? 

In inking people forever, I'm aware that it is not only the design that will stay on people's skin but also the time we spend together during the whole process. My role here is to listen and observe people's bodies to make them even more beautiful than they are. Sometimes the project we build together is to heal a certain complex or important phase in life. It is therefore very important to care about the human being in front of you.

My role here is to listen and observe people's bodies to make them even more beautiful than they are

How do you hope to inspire others? 

I don't know if I can inspire people as I'm not sure about what I’m doing lol. But sometimes people love to hear my random stories and parcours and as I'm mostly self-taught and I didn’t go to uni. I’m hoping that people will believe more in their dreams as I'm trying to, far from any conventional process in my art journey.

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What type of change do you want to inspire in your community/environment? 

I wish all the clichés and stereotypes would change or even disappear because I think they can lead to discrimination and prejudice and unconsciously reduces the potential of many people. I’m also trying to break stereotypes in the tattoo industry as I don't have any tattoos myself. We should try to create a more inclusive and accepting society that values people for who they are, not what they look like.

How much influence do you think (y)our backgrounds have on (y)our art and practices? 

At a young age, I was never taken seriously because I hated authority and hierarchy. At the age of 19, when I decided to leave school, I took my first job, explored the world and travelled alone. I realised that there was a certain confidence behind my doubts and this helped me a lot to believe more in myself and therefore in my artistic path. Travelling has helped me to become an understanding person. I’m 27 today, it is now very easy for me to talk to strangers and get on well with them, especially during tattoo sessions.

What are some challenges that you face while doing what you are passionate about? 

Starting broke was something haha but I think time is the biggest challenge I face in my passion. From the beginning until now, I feel like I have to constantly organize my time (and I'm not the best at it lol) and also sacrifice the time I could spend with my friends or to relax. So it's been a few years that I'm mostly at home doing thousands of things at the same time for my world domination plan.

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How do you define ‘community’? 

The word ‘community’ sounds a bit like family to me. It's a group of people who may have different paths but can agree and share common things and most importantly, are respectful to each other. I love seeing the little community I'm building since I share my lifestyle, art and interests on social media. I am really happy that in my practice I can meet some people and spend some quality face-to-face time during the tattoo session. It's always a wonderful surprise because I get along with everyone, even the shy ones.

What is a ‘safe space’ for you?

In my opinion, a safe space is a non-judgmental and supportive environment where everyone is accepted for who they are, regardless of their appearance or identity and without worrying about conforming to societal norms or any expectations. 

Is receiving care a privilege, a right? 

Receiving care can be seen as a privilege but I think it can be a gift we give to ourselves. Like taking a moment to breathe or seeking inner peace, simple things become fundamental rights that we all possess. Holding space for others to express themselves freely and without judgment is a way of offering the privilege of care. After all, we must take care of each other to create a world where care is accessible to all.

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Do you think this generation is redefining care and community building? And how? 

I feel like this generation is trying to deconstruct and reclaim the notion of community and caring for each other with the recent explosion of social networking and media content. There is a lot of content that creatively aims to raise awareness and promote acceptance of differences, making information more accessible and understandable. It’s wonderful to see many people taking the time to highlight others and break the codes of a society that divides us.

What small acts of care do you hope to see more of? 

Random acts of kindness, such as holding the door for someone or giving up a seat in public transport, are basic but always nice to see. But the most important thing for me is to be aware of the impact of our actions on others. Making a conscious effort to choose kindness and compassion in all interactions with people, regardless of their background, beliefs or opinions. Holding space for others to express themselves freely and without judgment. Sometimes, a small gesture like a smile, can make a big difference in someone’s life, showing them that they are noticed and appreciated.

How do you balance taking care of others and taking care of yourself? Do you make that distinction in the first place? 

I’m most of the time highlighting people more than myself. I might be one of those 'people pleasers', taking care of others rather than myself. But I feel like taking from others is a way of taking care of myself (if that makes sense). I'm always looking out for the people around me and I want to make everyone feels good, so sometimes I forget to listen to myself and make sure that I’m also feeling alright. I’m working on it lately and I’m grateful for the support of those around me as I strive to maintain a healthy balance between caring for others and prioritising my well-being. 

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Do you care about being cared about? 

To be honest, I must admit that I sometimes enjoy recognition. It can be frustrating to feel like I'm doing my best and not receiving any recognition for it. However, my actions come from a place of love, and I don't expect anything in return. While recognition is nice, it's not something I necessarily seek out, so most of the time, I don’t care about being cared about and that’s fine for me.

What do you want to be remembered for? 

I don't know... I hope I'll find out one day.  But I would be happy if people remembered that I was a good person after all. 

<div class="editorial-banner"> <div class=“editorial-credits”> Photos by @henridyn </div></div>

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