Dr. Fukushi Masaichi is a pathologist doctor, honorary professor at the Japanese Medical University in Tokyo, founded the world’s only collection of tattoos taken from corpses.
Dr. Fukushi Masaichi and his son Fukushi Katsunari are known in Japan as “Doctor Tattoos.”
Fascinated by the art of Japanese tattooing, the doctor removed tattooed skin from donated bodies and stored it, stretching and placing under glass or putting on a mannequin.
He paid poor people money to get them tattooed and bequeathed their body to him. After their death, he removed the skin from the corpses and kept the tattoos.
Now there is a museum at the University of Tokyo, in which there are 105 exhibits from the collection, many of which are the entire skin. Unfortunately, it is closed to ordinary visitors.
Dr. Fukushi worked at the Mitsui Memorial Hospital, and since the tattoo was common among poor or mentally disabled people, he encountered many tattooed people there and became interested in it. In general, I studied skin pigmentation and growth of moles.
Fukushu was respected by many of Tokyo’s top tattoo artists, and was invited as an expert in tattoo contests in Japan and abroad.
Part of the collection disappeared during a trip to America: one of the suitcases with tattooed skin was stolen in Chicago and it was never found, although he was offered a reward.