Tattoo artist Dillon Forte creates sacred geometries on skin. For the past 12 years, he has translated his reverence for nature and its innate patterns into intricate body art that symbolizes the connectedness of all things. “Sacred geometry is simply the mathematical proportions and ratios within nature,” Forte explains to My Modern Met. “I think this interconnectivity is fascinating and focusing on it in my art allows me to contemplate these connections even further.”
Forte is influenced by his world travels, and doing so allows him to reconnect to the essence of his visual art. “Cultures around the world have recognized [sacred geometry] for thousands of years,” he says, “and have paid tribute with their art, architecture, religions, etc.” In studying these sources, he incorporates a variety of styles, from meticulous dot work to elements with a painterly touch. The mandala—seen as a microcosm of the universe—is the most prominent motif in his designs. It represents the beauty of a cyclical world that is at times made of hard edges and other times soft.
Forte has found a lot of success in tattooing—he counts actor Chris Hemsworth as one of his most prominent clients. But body art isn’t his only source of creativity. “I actually still paint on traditional canvases,” he admits. “I have debuted some of those paintings in my art shows in Oakland and I am also currently working on some pieces for a larger show in Los Angeles.”
Tattooing, however, is an experience that can’t be replicated on canvas. “What draws me to tattooing my art onto people is that those canvases continue to display my designs for their whole lives. They have their own meaningful attachment to the tattoos and I enjoy making people happy.”