Meet Richie Culver, the Hull-born, Berlin-based artist behind our latest collaboration. We’ve teamed up with Richie to create a limited edition range of tees, tops and caps inspired by his early works and personal style. Check out the Richie Culver x Topman film above, inspired by Richie’s experiences of moving to London from his beloved Hull.
To introduce you to both the artist and the collection, we caught up with Richie (in a sweaty East-London pub) to chat art, fashion and working with Topman.
How would you describe your work as an artist to someone who has never seen it before?
I guess there is a lot of humour in there. Pieces like my ‘I love you’ piece show how I think and feel. I can’t write songs or play a guitar but my art is very personal so it’s my way of writing a song. It’s autobiographic. You can learn a lot about me through it.
Do you think fashion should make as much of a statement as art?
I wouldn’t say I’ve tried to make a statement. With my art, I try not to alienate people. I want everyone to try it. Same with this collection.
What do you think art means to an ordinary guy?
Art means nothing. You say the word art and it rings a different bell to anyone who doesn’t know about art. It would be nice if my collection could hit those types of channels. Its like when you walk into a record shop, it can be intimidating if you are new to it. It’s the same with art galleries, a lot of people in smaller towns have to feel brave to do that. So, I hope my collection can introduce people to the idea of art.
You have a unique style, has this always been a natural thing for you?
I’ve always been into fashion. When I first left school, I actually wanted to be a footballer. That didn’t work out but when I moved to Leeds I did a lot of work in retail and that kick-started my interest in fashion. I look my look but I've never wanted to be too aware of it. It just comes very naturally to me.
You are based in Berlin at the moment, has the city inspired the way you dress?
In Berlin, you can get away with a lot more there when it comes to dressing down. Recently I’ve been wearing a lot of tracksuit bottoms. Berlin is very much like the whole of East London – there is no Chelsea or Knightsbridge there. It’s all a community of creativity and there is a certain look. In London it’s far more varied depending on the area you live in but with Berlin it’s just the one thing.
What’s your favourite item in the collection?
The t-shirt called Ken's Lass, which is Barbie’s legs dangling.
If you could offer men one style tip, what would it be?
Never compromise. If you like it, do your own thing.
Does this collaboration feel like a return to your British roots?
Yeah, very much so and Topman is a brand that’s always been in my life. When I was eleven years old, I think Leeds United had Topman as a sponsor. And I’ll never forget buying my first Topman shirt.
Richie Culver, pictured below on location at the video shoot