French Tattoo Artist Gets World’s 1st Prosthetic Arm That Doubles as a Tattoo Machine

A French tattoo artist who lost his right arm 22 years ago recently received what has been called the world’s first tattooing prosthetic arm.

JC Sheitan Tenet, 32, told ABC News today he received and demonstrated the first prototype of the tattoo machine prosthesis earlier this month during a convention in Devezieux, France.

Though Tenet has been tattooing with his left arm and hand for years, he’s now learning how to tattoo with his right arm using the “Edward Scissorhands”-esque tool, he said.

The tattoo machine arm was created by visual artist and engineer Jean-Louis Gonzalez, who goes by “Gonzal.”

Gonzal told ABC News today that Tenet can control the prosthetic arm with his shoulder. Gonzal is still working on perfecting the prosthesis and said he hopes the next prototype will give Tenet more wrist mobility.

Tenet said that he uses the prosthesis to do a little filling but that he doesn’t rely on it to do elaborate artwork. He added that the needle is disposable and that the prosthesis can be cleaned like a regular tattoo machine.

And though the prosthesis has an oxidized metal look, it’s not rusted or unsanitary at all, Tenet said. It was painted in “steampunk style,” he explained. Steampunk is a science fiction genre and design style that typically features technology and aesthetics inspired by 19th century steam-powered machinery.

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