|Born||20 February 1933|
|Died||8 May 1996|
|Other names||Mr. Sebastian|
|Occupation||body piercer, tattoo artist, art teacher|
|Known for||a primary developer of contemporary body piercing|
Originally an art teacher, Alan Oversby left his initial profession to pursue his interests in tattooing and piercing instead. From his studio in London, he promoted both tattooing and body piercing, especially within the gay leather community. He was a correspondent of both Doug Malloy and Jim Ward. Sponsored by Malloy, he visited Los Angeles. Malloy also sponsored trips to London to visit him, bringing along Ward and Sailor Sid Diller. These exchanges were critical to the global spread of the techniques and technology used in contemporary body piercing.
Oversby was also responsible for the adoption of the use of topical and local anesthetics as part piercing procedure in Europe. Although they are used less now, it used to be standard practice to use anesthetics when performing piercings in England, where in North America this practice is almost unknown.
He was interviewed in the fourth issue of PFIQ. He performed much of the tattooing and piercing on Psychic TV musicians Genesis P-Orridge and Paula P-Orridge. His vocals were used in the Psychic TV track "Message from The Temple" which appeared on their first album Force the Hand of Chance.
Alan, like the other men, was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm for performing a genital piercing on a client. He was also charged with using anaesthetic without a licence and for sending obscene material through the post (photographs of piercings).
As the judge was not willing to take the consensuality of the participants into account, Alan pleaded guilty along with the other 15 men. He received a sentence of 15 months, which was suspended for two years.
- "The Beginnings of the Modern Body Piercing Movement", Body Modification E-zine article
- "A Visit to London", Body Modification E-zine article
- "Obituary: Mr Sebastian", The Independent, 22 May 1996