Mark Mahoney is a living legend in the tattoo world. He is a man whose eyes tell a story. And he is the distinguished proprietor and principal artist at The Shamrock Social Club on Sunset Boulevard.
His iconic, signature style is fine-line black and gray single needle tattooing for which Mahoney is considered to be one of the leaders in elevating and popularizing as an art form. He's also acclaimed for his majestic portrayal of religious icons. Mark Mahoney is revered by fellow tattoo artists, and the younger generation look to him as inspiration and mentor in the craft of tattooing.
Mark was introduced to tattooing as a teenager. His career spans from Boston 1977 when tattooing was illegal to his involvement in the early 80's LA punk scene (the late Sid Vicious and Johnny Thunders were some of his first clients) to his beginnings from the Pike in Long Beach, California to his pivotal years in Hollywood.
Mark's clients range from the working class individual to rock musicians and notable film actors, and he treats them all with equal respect, consideration and discretion. He is a strong proponent of tattoos as "art for the people."
The Shamrock Social Club is regarded as an all-inclusive, comfortable, and welcoming place for people from all walks of life. Regarding The Shamrock Social Club's inviting nature, Mark said in an interview, "We’re not here to engrandize ourselves. We’re here to make people feel good about themselves and about their tattoos. Besides, I think you should be nice to the people who are trying to give you money. It’s just good sense." Mark still views tattooing as a joint effort between himself and his client.
Mark Mahoney is the epitome of a true tastemaker not only in tattooing, but also in his dapper, strong personal style. Mahoney is dressed to the nines - head to toe - every single day, not just for photoshoots or for celebrity clients but just as sharp when tattooing blue-collar workers.
This renowned tattoo artist, husband and father, has a genuine love and passion for his craft; he's in it for all the right reasons. He has come out of the ups and downs of life with regeneration and wisdom. And he is a true champion of the underdogs and supporter of independent, small family businesses like ours. He's all class, inside and out.
“People consider him a legend in the tattoo world, but his fame goes beyond that of the needle. Mark is a kind soul. His persona is surrounded by an air of mystery. When I look at him I always have the impression that he knows more than he is willing to tell, and this is what makes him so elegant and solid.” - Ivan Olita, Filmmaker
"When it comes to black and gray tattoos there are thousands of practitioners but only a handful who could ever be considered teachers–let alone masters of the art." - Lowrider Magazine, in a story on Mark Mahoney & The Shamrock Social Club