Celebrated tattoo artist Koji Ichimaru known for his traditional Japanese style pieces, has died. News of his death was shared on a GoFundMe page, with fans having since taken to social media to share their respects. We explore the life and career of Koji Ichimaru.

Who was Koji Ichimaru?

Koji Ichimaru was a tattoo artist best known for his traditional Japanese style designs. Born in Japan, Ichimaru started his career in his home town Kokura having grown up around family members who were tattoo artists.

During his career, Ichimaru became known for his distinctive style and previously opened up on the inspirations behind his work while talking to Tattoo Life.

When asked how he would define his art style, he told the publication: “I would describe it as traditional Japanese when I am working on big pieces like backs and arms. For smaller pieces, I would say that they are Japanese subjects but the style is inspired by American Traditional.”

Following the news of his death, some sites have claimed the artist featured on tattoo reality series Miami Ink. However, it seems some may have confused Ichimaru with Miami Ink’s Yoji Harada who died in 2019.

Love is Blind: After the Altar | Official Trailer | Netflix

Love is Blind: After the Altar | Official Trailer | Netflix

Artist’s death announced online

Koji Ichimaru’s death became known within the tattoo community after a GoFundMe page was set up in memory of the artist by close friends.

A statement on the page read: “It is with a very heavy heart that we tell you that a member of our tattoo family, Koji Ichimaru has passed away. At this time, we are respecting the families privacy and reserving details.”

The page which was created yesterday (Monday, 26 July) has since raised almost €40,000 which will be donated to Ichimaru’s family.

Tattoo community mourns the artist

Following news of Koji Ichimaru’s death online, many fans of his work have taken to social media as they pay tribute to the tattooist:

Olympic swimmer Anthony Ervin has also reflected on fond memories with Ichimaru as he shared a snap alongside the artist as he posed with Ervin’s gold medal.

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