CUT THE RIBBON, ARTORIA GIBBONS
Posted on July 15, 2013 by Editorial Staff
What a ribbon! A Tattoo attraction that worked for 35 years in circus and carnival sideshows! Artoria Gibbons was the stage name for Mrs. Anne Gibbons. Born in Wisconsin from poor parents, by the age of 14 she decided to leave home and while hanging around a local carnival sideshow she met Red Gibbons, tattoo artist and joined him in his ramblings. Artoria’s tattoos were amazing: magnificent reproductions of paintings by Raphael and Michelangelo and a few patriotic designs. Charles “Red” Gibbons was one of the best tattooists of his generation and there was no better example of his skill than his beautiful wife Anne (who used the stage name Artoria). Carrying on in the grand tradition that goes back to the 1800’s, a tattooist would tattoo his wife thus making her “his calling card” for his tattooing ability. The tattoo art on Artoria’s body was so beautiful and she was such a looker to receive a lot of attention in sideshows. Red Gibbons died on June 18, 1964, Artoria in 1985. Their daughter Charlene is now in the process of writing a book about her famous parents, a tribute to the ‘finest in tattooing’ and show-business life. In fact, little has been written on the lives and careers of many tattooists and tattooed attractions of the past.