Three professions, two generations, one raw material: skin


Allgäu GmbH, Dominik Berchtold

Klaus and Daniel Bensmann are father and son. They work under one roof in Bad Hindelang. But not in the same profession. Daniel is a full-time tattoo artist whose creativity extends to painting with ink on animal skins. Klaus is a leatherworker.

Like father like son, as the saying goes. At first glance, this might not seem to be the case when looking at Klaus and Daniel Bensmann from Bad Hindelang.

Daniel Bensmann (31) is a tattoo artist with his own studio, Hütmôlar. He freely shows off his body art. His father, Klaus Bensmann (61), is a professional leatherworker and produces both traditional Bavarian costumes and modern clothing in his workshop, Leder Klaus Bensmann. 

But at second glance, it is clear what unites them: their dedication to sustainability.
Klaus Bensmann exclusively uses animal skins sourced from the region in his leather tailoring workshop.

For traditional costumes: chamois-tanned deerskin. For belts, bags and the like: tanned cowhide. Having originally trained as a tanner, he also knows how to make parchment from animal skin.

His son Daniel paints on this parchment with ink, quill and brush. This has provided him with a sense of creative balance in his career as a commissioned tattoo artist. And there’s a nice bonus too: his artwork has been selling well for about three years now. He explains: "Buyers are found for some of the works even before I can exhibit them."

Too good to throw away
The Bensmanns don't source the raw material for the parchment from just anywhere. The animal skins come from the Ostrach valley. Daniel Bensmann has been hunting there on behalf of the hunting association since 2015. He explains: "The fact that certain parts of a shot animal are not usually processed and instead simply thrown away for economic reasons upset me and I thought it was wrong."

And so, a year later, Daniel Bensmann finally came up with the idea of painting on parchment using ink, quill and brush. Daniel Bensmann's tattoos and his artwork both go under the fitting name of "Hütmôlar" (a dialect word for “skin painter”). All those who would like to know more about him and his studio can contact him directly:

Hütmôlar Atelier
Ostrachstraße 38
87541 Bad Hindelang

Klaus Bensmann produces a range of items in his workshop, including traditional breeches made from regional skins. Those who would like to know more about his background and his work are welcome to contact him at the workshop:

Leder Klaus Bensmann
Ostrachstraße 38
87541 Bad Hindelang