Meet Alia Fadaly: The Only Tattoo Artist Recognized by the Egyptian Government
Nestled in the heart of Zamalek lies a parlor, right on the corner of 26th of July street. It’s not your everyday parlor that you would have in mind, but rather Egypt’s only governmentally recognized Tattoo spot.
The Ink Shop, is owned and operated by Alia Fadaly, one of Egypt’s few and only Tattoo artists. Opened in 2008, when tattoo culture was at it’s epitome of tabooness, Alia went against the status quo and put her love and passion for art and design to work. Now ten years later, it’s nearly impossible to find a moment in which Fadaly isn’t working through her long list of bookings. As Egyptian culture has begun to change and it is no longer taboo to get inked.
Tell us a little bit about yourself? How did you find yourself becoming a full time professional tattoo artist?
At first, my intention wasn’t to become a full time professional tattoo artist. I remember going to a tattoo parlor about 7 years ago, a friend of mine was getting one done and the lines just didn’t look perfect to me, I felt like I had the biggest urge to fix it and in order for me to do that, I had to learn! I went online and checked numerous artists abroad, saw some amazing work from all over the world and it was at that point that I realized that this would be my passion in life.
What’s your background as an artist, if I remember correctly you actually have a medical and an interior design background?
It must feel like a huge accomplishment to be the first and only recognized tattoo parlor in Egypt by the government. How did that happen?
Have you seen a shift in our society’s mentality towards tattoos? Are they less taboo? Are there people you never expected to have gotten tattoos getting them?
What’s the coolest design that you have done that sticks out in your mind?
What is the craziest place (physically as a location) have you tattooed someone?
Is there any advice you would give to first time tattoo goers?
Any upcoming trends people should be aware of?