A Special Message From State of Grace

We were lucky to meet Koji during his biannual trips to State of Grace and The Bay Area Tattoo Convention. Missing his native Japan, he would buy piles of goodies from Nijiya Market: bentos, musubi, Caloriemate, cheesy senbei and more. Like anyone who met Koji, we fell in love with his cheerful bright personality. He always had a smile on his face!! It was amazing to see how many people would come to Japantown to meet him and get one of his coveted tattoos.

Despite his fame, he was humble and kind- we were nervous about asking him to make a design for a festival - but being a man who valued family and community he gladly agreed. We are all saddened by his passing and hope this design helps you remember that smile and golden attitude of the legend Koji Ichimaru.