Beth Richards caught up with Erik Brunetti to talk about his past, present and future.
(All photos courtesy of Erik Brunetti)
Your brand has been around many years, take me back, how was FUCT conceived?
Its conception was never really nurtured or planned out as most conventional brands are. FUCT came to me – I was waiting for it. It was more like an accident that I discovered or walked upon. It has a life of its own. Its style cannot be pinned down to any certain group of people, but its energy combined with my own, attracts all genres of people.
You have seen the evolution of skate and the culture that surrounds it. How did growing up skating and listening to punk shape your life? Any particular moments that resonate most with you?
Musically, possibly seeing NYC bands like Reagan Youth, Kraut, Antidote and so on had an impact on my as a youth. Going to the Love Club and witnessing the D.C. bands like VOID, Marginal Man etc…So many things.
I lived in cars throughout a majority of the 80’s, skateboarding at spots all over the USA. San Diego’s Delmar Skate Ranch was great, but Texas was even better. I’ll never forget arriving at the Dallas Clown Ramp and the first thing I witnessed was Jeff Phillips doing 9 foot frontside airs, no pads, holding a forty ounce with a tab of Acid on his tongue…To me that was skateboarding. 100% fuck you, reckless abandonment. I have always felt the drive to be free. I began gravitating towards the rebel/outlaw lifestyle at a very young age. I have lived on my own since I was a teenager.
Over the years many of your concepts have had a political tone. What is the most important message you are trying to convey with your art?
The message is very simple: To be honest, tell the truth – public text books tell lies – I am always trying to undo that way of thinking, to un-program the viewer. I am presenting what I know to be the truth. It is the truth will set you free. I have no interest in remaining neutral. I work without a safety net.
You’re a music lover, sometime DJ, who are some of your favourite musical influences?
What are you reading right now?
Just read “John Updike, The Early Stories” (It was a birthday gift). Currently reading, “Everyone Always Talks About the Weather…We Don’t” The writings of Ulrike Meinhof.
Do you have a favourite author or book?
I love all my books equally.
It hasn’t changed my work. The work load for the kids line is alleviated by another group of designers in Japan. It’s manufactured and sold in Japan only, therefore it has a different look than the adult line we do.
You have had a chance to meet and work with some amazing people. Over the years what has been your favourite moment or career highlight?
Will Oldham (Bonnie Prince Billy) was natural to work with. Julian Schnabel at an event wearing the FUCT logo tee with a suit was a sight. Keith Richards, so many, I can’t remember all off the top of my head.
Future plans for you and for FUCT?
For FUCT, I am writing / directing short movies for the brand at the moment. I never really plan the future of FUCT, when I get disillusioned or bored with it, I stop.
As for myself, I just finished writing a full length motion picture. I’m still writing/recording music, scoring soundtracks…whatever comes up creatively that calls my name.