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The Art of Scarification: A Talk with Nicholas Adams

A Talk with a World Famous Scarification Artist About One of the Most Controversial Forms of Body Modification

Scarification is an ancient body modification practice that involves the cutting and branding of skin to create a permanent design out of scar tissue. It is a prominent ritual throughout parts of Africa, as these markings will appear more obvious than tattoos on dark skin and it is used in coming of age rituals for both men and women. It was brought to the West during the 19th century and today, it is a form of body modification that is practiced throughout the United States.

Nicholas Adams is a traveling scarification artist and body piercing specialist from Montréal who is one of the most recognizable faces of the modification in the modern age. He has performed scarification throughout the world and watched it grow into a more mainstream art form over time. Scarification is still continuing to gain acceptance throughout the Western world, with very few artists specializing in the craft—however, Adams is on a mission to change that. Take a peek into the mind of a scarification artist and check out what we learned from speaking to him about this growing field of body modification.

Photo via Instagram