Erin Currie: 100 Creatives
Number 65: Erin Currie
Years spent living in MN: Mostly all 35.
Toymaker, artist, and clothing designer Erin Currie is perhaps best known for her Curster series, a line of vinyl gnomes, beasties, and bunnies with wide eyes and mischievous facial expressions. Her pieces have cultivated a cult following on etsy and at Manufactory, a Lyn-Lake store that she co-owns with her husband Dave and Suzy Greenburg. In addition to stitching up unique toys, Currie has also exhibited her darkly whimsical paintings, and in recent years she has even ventured into clothing design, creating bold, gothic pieces for Dollmighty, a semi-yearly show hosted at the Soo Visual Arts Center.
Name three things inspiring your work right now:
1. The deep sea and all its strange inhabitants. As a Minnesotan, I can appreciate any creature who makes camp where others dare not go.
2. The year of the Rabbit, from which I am.
3. And lastly, the sorry state of the union. Making due with less always dredges up new ways to do things.
Name three things that inspired and/or motivated you as a budding creative type:
What was your last big project?
That would be Dollmighty, the fashion show I did at SooVac last year. So, so many clothes.
What do you have going on now or coming up in the near future that should be on our radar?
Well, last summer myself, my husband Dave, and Suzy Greenburg teamed up to open our own retail space MANUFACTORY, so that's where I've been funneling everything. At the end of April, Dollmighty will rear its pretty little head again for a special event with SooVac, and it will probably trickle over to the store.
Creative/career high point (so far)?
Probably getting my first toy, Curster's YETI, manufactured and distributed.
What has been your biggest challenge as an artist?
Apparently owning a vinyl demon is not necessary for most people, so don't count on reading about me in Forbes any time soon. But I can't really help it; smarter people than I tell me what I "should" do with my pocket of skills all the time--and I completely agree! Then I go make a toy.
How has the local scene changed since you began your career?
Not much actually, but I'm hardly the one to ask. From my perspective, which is from behind some sort of needle, not at all. Occasionally I turn my Darth Vader poster over and look at the James Bond side for a while.
Name another local artist that you're currently excited about:
I'd have to go with Kit Lane. She has needle felted her way into my heart.
What was your favorite toy growing up?
A stuffed raccoon named Rachel. My parents bought her for me in the gift shop at Children's Hospital when I destroyed my right arm (a.k.a. "The Terminator").
You are forced to become one of your creations. Which do you choose, and why?
Easy, one of the Girls. Why? They are the only girls in Cursterland. And they run the show. But in reality I would probably have more in common with a monkey, or a minion.
Do you have a suggestion for someone whose work we should be checking out? Feel free to leave your top picks in the comments.
Past creatives, so far:
81. Joseph Scrimshaw
80. Adam Turman
79. Raul Osorio
78. Kristin Berwald
77. Rudy Fig
76. Laura Fulk
66. Heidi Arneson
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