#3. Corpse Tattoos
Someone who has multiple tattoos could claim to be a "collector," but in most cases they probably just like attention a whole lot. If you're a true collector of tattoos then they can't be on you, they need to belong to someone else. Don't get squeamish--it may sound horrifying but it just means there's a collection of stained skin, ripped from corpses, and preserved in a mummified state under glass.
Also, the skin is pulled so tight when mounted it's near translucent, and light shines through the puncture holes. Neat! Now tribal armbands and butterfly back tats can be appreciated by our great grand children, reassuring them that such poor decision makers are long dead.
Who would collect this?
Surprisingly, only a small number of people collect these works and his name is Dr. Katsunari Fukushi. He is involved with the Japanese Tattoo Institute where they study the art of looking like a total badass. His pieces are from those who endured the traditional hand-applied method of "tebori," where they insert charcoal ink into your skin with bundled needles attached to a bamboo stick.
The Yakuza (the Japanese mafia) were famous for having these tattoos and Fukushi has 105 flawless examples in a collection that amounts to a John Dillinger trading card crossed with Leatherface's wet dream. Photographs of the collection don't appear to be available, because either he doesn't like the attention or because camera technology has not advanced to the point where it can capture something that creepy.
Our attempt, via Photoshop
Most of Fukushi's prime pieces were gathered from the 1920s to the 1940s, which makes us sad to think of all of the glorious modern tattoos that will never be preserved. Maybe somebody needs to start a new collection ...
#2. Pickled Punks
"Pickled Punks" was carnival slang for jarred fetuses that were put on display at sideshows. Normally the fetus would feature some type of abnormality, because an abortion crammed into a Mason jar intended for sweet Georgia peaches wasn't shocking enough on its own.
Who would collect this?
If you're thinking it's illegal as hell to own these, you're right. C.M. Christ (not to be confused with Jesus H.) learned that in 1977 when his baby freak show was raided by police and he was arrested for the illegal possession of human remains.
You want to play around with the dead? You need a mortician's license and even then you can't charge people for looks, even though that's kind of exactly what you do with a funeral, but with all the money being paid by the people who were most affected by the death. So what's a modern pickled punk collector to do? Give up their terrifying collection? Hell no! They buy rubber replicas, of course.
They're called "bouncers" by collectors, because the rubber replicas will bounce in the jar. If you shake the jar of your newly bought fetus and the thing inside doesn't bounce off the bottom, somebody is probably going to jail.
The replicas range from $65 to $200, so go ahead and spice up the cubicle, just like this guy:
OK, so number one could be considered rather unsafe for work, so we're going to put it behind a link. Yes, that's right a third page, and this time we have a reason, maybe the best reason we've ever had for adding a third page to an article: there are detailed representations of genitalia on the way.