Bullseye

Artist Curtis Kulig takes us behind the scenes of his New York studio and explores the inspiration for his ‘Accuracy’ painting series
By Evan Goodfellow | Art | 6 June 2016

Curtis Kulig grew up in Minot, North Dakota and moved to Los Angeles in 2000. It was in L.A. that he was busy taking photos, and came up with the tag, “Love Me” that quickly morphed into a mega-brand.  His “Love Me” art has led to collaborations with Nike, DKNY, Urban Outfitters, Vans, Smashbox among others. Spanning mediums such as illustration, photography and painting, Kulig’s most recent project is his “Accuracy” painting series in which he has set about exploring the concept of consistency through the archery target. His goal is to paint one target per month for infinity.

This writer’s introduction to Curtis Kulig came through skateboarder and artist Mark Gonzales. During a conversation with Gonzales where he was explaining making city racers – a skateboard with a box screwed onto the top of the board, complete with handles to race through the city streets – he mentioned his friend Curtis Kulig, “you know, the ‘Love Me’ guy?” Apparently Kulig helped him with a few modifications on the racer.

Evan Goodfellow: What spawned the idea for the Accuracy series?
Curtis Kulig: Most of my work relates to emotional thinking and the documentation of time. I liked the idea of making a painting a month ad infinitum. It allows me to paint and record my feelings as time passes. Going back and looking at which months were less or more emotional is interesting to me, a database of my mind’s thoughts. A target is understandable grounds for recording these emotions based on where the shot is placed.

EG: So the paintings symbolise life. Each day or month may look the same but the results vary.
CK: That is the idea. Over time I want to be able to look into the past and see where my emotional state was at during that recorded month. I will compare year to year. The idea is to be the most accurate in painting and life. I think everyone is always going for the bullseye and in that experience you are bound to be off in any given situation. That is where you grow and learn as a human being and that should be exciting. It is a visual journal of emotional shots.

“I think everyone is on a path of perfection. I like the idea of letting all that go and trusting in the universe and letting things unfold innately.”

GALLERY

EG: I was watching an old interview with you where you spoke about your time in California taking photos and documenting, does photography still play an important part in your creative process now?
CK: Photography has always played an important role in my creative process. I used to shoot photos much more. It was exciting to shoot new subjects but I would rather be painting at this point. Painting feels more calculated and thought provoking to me. I still shoot people that stop by the studio from day to day. Mostly polaroids.

EG: I liked the poem I read, about working towards accuracy. I was wondering if perfectionism is something that is a part of your life or creative process?
CK: I think everyone is on a path of perfection. I like the idea of letting all that go and trusting in the universe and letting things unfold innately. I wouldn’t call myself organised, more like my assistant is very organised and makes sure all my pens and books and things are lined up orderly. Truthfully that kind of behaviour freaks me out a bit. I fall more in the realm of an organised mess – like everything in the life somewhere between chaos and order.

Follow Curtis Kulig’s work here.

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