Explore North Park

Q&A w/ Kim Curran

Kim Curran is a resident in North Park and a well known local artist in the community. She participated in the North Park Street Gallery, where artists brought their creative flare in creating pieces for our utility boxes. She recently collaborated with A7D Creative Group to design the Love Where You Live, Explore North Park mural that can be found at the end of Illinois St. x University Ave. right next to Hammond’s Gourmet Ice Cream. Follow her at @kimcurranpaints on Instagram!

  1. San Diego is a big city, why did you choose North Park to live in?
    1. Richard, the guy I was dating 23 years ago, lived in NP. We will be married for 20 years in November. I’ve seen some wonderful changes to the area over the years.
    2. To make a short story long, Richard was friends with Mike Gribble of Spike & Mike Festival of Animation. Mike convinced Richard to invest in a property in North Park with him. After Mike’s death in 1994, Richard relocated from Riverside to live in the home. I was living in a studio apartment in Pacific Beach at the time and was wanting to move inland a little. My sister knew Richard was moving to NP and needed a roommate. I met with him to check out the place. It was a strange. Imagine a home where Mike Gribble had lived for a decade, a guy who made a living by showing cartoons and producing a “Sick & Twisted” animation festival. I recall a pig on a unicycle on a wire spanning the living room ceiling. So, even though I thought Richard was cute, it was just too odd of a place for me to live, so I passed. We started dating about a year later and are now raising a family in this wonderful neighborhood. Izzy 16, Jack 11 and Sara the crazy black lab are North Park natives.
  2. What about North Park inspires you?
    1. A combination of things, I suppose. The old and the new. I enjoy how there are dirty parts, parts that aren’t so pretty, yet it is still so wonderful. It is a glamorous ghetto. It makes me feel empowered that I can have all my imperfections and still make something beautiful and lovely. It gives my permission to create, as if imperfection is the new perfect.
  3. What was your initial reaction to being asked to create the Explore North Park mural?
    1. Terrified. I am still pretty new to being an artist and I have never painted a mural. I acted as if I could do it, then figured out how.
  4. What inspired “Love Where You Live” for your art?
    1. In early December of last year, a friend of my made a Facebook post that read, “What do you want in 2018?” to which I replied: A solo art show! Less than two weeks later, I received a message from a friend of a friend stating she knew someone who owned a brewery and was looking to display local art in the tasting room and wondered was I interested. I was both thrilled and terrified by the opportunity. The voices of doubt immediately started in my brain and the negative sentences flowed. One of the sentences was, “You don’t know how to produce an art show, you’ve never done that before.” It was true, but irrelevant. I chose in that moment to get out of my own way. This is what I wanted, I had just declared it on FB for the world to see. I was not going to let the fact that I did not know what the hell I was doing combined with a little terror stop me. I made the connection and setup a meeting. It went well and we set some dates in January for the install and the artist’s reception. I discovered what was needed and, with some help from friends, I did it. While trying to generate a body of work worthy of my very first solo art show, I got very sick. I paint outside in my backyard, and it was raining all week so I was unable to paint. I was on antibiotics and pretty stressed out. Things were not going well. But then, the rain stopped and I was feeling better. I began painting like crazy, but I was still stressed out.  I decided to take a little time and do some painting not intended for my show. I needed to relax,  just have a some fun painting and enjoy the process. I ended up with my  “Love Where You Live” pieces.
  5. What memorable responses have you had to your work?
    1. I had many visitors as I painted. The one that touched me the most was a little girl named Lyric and her daddy. I let her paint on the mural. In return, they gave me a song. It had me in tears.
  6. Do you have any upcoming shows or exhibits we can find your art at?
    1. I will be launching a new line of prints at the beginning of March that will have text over some of my original pieces. Follow me on Instagram for any inquiries on my art at @kimcurranpaints!



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