Interview w/ Katie Kimmel - Rooster MagAugust 22, 2017
Originally published on August 21st, 2017 on http://www.therooster.com/blog/ceramic-dogs-and-doodles-art-talk-katie-kimmel
Favorite color combo:
Pink and white
Cat or dog:
Favorite discontinued product:
I have a cellulite lotion that I’ve been hoarding since I was 16. I’m not sure if it is discontinued, but I remember that it was really expensive so it might as well be. Also it’s definitely expired so I only smell it.
Weirdest thing you bought at an antique mall:
Not exactly an antique mall, but at The Redondo Beach Fun Factory you can win a pink donut “surprise” box that is filled with amazing garbage. In the past I’ve gotten a cut extension cord, high heel shoes and a keychain with my name on it!
Describe your art in one word:
What’s the most asked question you get when people ask you about your art? We’re probably going to ask a few …
Haha you did — it’s the question about “establishing my style”
What is it about working with ceramics that you like the most?
This is a corny thing to say, but ceramics is at the center of my brain’s venn diagram. I like the immediacy of working with clay and how permanent things feel when a piece is finished.
The ceramic vases/coffee mugs of cats and dogs: Were these inspired by your own pup, or how did that particular project come about?
The animal vases came about in a backwards way — my goal for that day was to make something functional so I made a vase. I remembered that a friend had suggested I do something with dogs so I put a little puppy face on there, and that was it. I really wish there was a cute coming of age story to tell but the whole thing was very uneventful. The response I’ve gotten to them was very surprising/exciting.
Now I spend majority of my time working on them which is a dream.
One of the elements that draws people to your art is your way of taking real things that have happened to you and making them into comedic art, whether it be the woman who approached your friend in the parking lot, the hate mail left by @jimmiejohn85, the guy in the long jeans and flip flops who told you at a bar you probably have a ‘hot body’ under your ugly dress, etc. etc. How do you know what moments to portray?
When I sit down to make a drawing my head will trail off into certain memories and then usually that will inform what my drawing is going to be about. I don’t know if I’m actually going out of my way to make them comedic, the situations were all very funny in the moment. When the woman approached my friend and asked what her blood type was, I sat down on the pavement and cried. The whole interaction was very unexpected, and I think about it constantly.
If someone insults me about something that I’m not insecure about, it delights me. I can’t explain why but I’m sure a lot of people know the feeling. It can be really fun to argue with someone, like a word game. I can’t imagine that I would ever make a drawing about an interaction that hurt my feelings.
Who is the most memorable person you sold your art to? In a previous interview, it was said you sold some to a pretty cool dentist …
I had a booth last year at a craft fair and Don Barris (of the Ding Dong Show, Monday nights in the Comedy Store’s Belly Room 10pm) came.
When I was a kid Don would come to the movies with my family and hang back to get popcorn before the movie started, after we found our seats he would come in with the largest popcorn and stand in front of the screen so the theatre was his audience and scream, ‘KATIE!!?? KATIE KIMMEL WHERE ARE YOU SITTING??’ It embarrassed me and made me laugh.
At the craft fair, in the same humor, Don was walking around screaming at the top of his lungs about the prices of my artwork. Through my laughter I could see everyone in my area was absolutely horrified and looking at me with sad eyes. Then he bought a ceramic lemon.
When you’re sitting down to create, do you have to make a certain environment to get the creative juices flowing?
I can get pretty antsy sitting in one place for long amounts of time, so usually I just put on TV to trick myself into staying put.
Okay, what’s up with these portraits of The Rock?
He is a star!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I celebrate his existence everyday.
Who are some of the people that inspire you the most?
The woman who asked my friend what her blood type was and whoever packs the surprise boxes at The Redondo Fun Factory.
What’s next for your work and where do you hope to see it in 5 years?
I’ll be showing some new artwork I’ve been keeping secret at The Black Book Gallery in Denver this November, and then I honestly have no idea.
Instagram @Katiekimmel // Buy stuff @ katiekimmel.com