If you’ve ever thought the art world had a bit of an ego, then John Kilduff, AKA Mr. Let’s Paint, is its literal running antithesis. Kilduff is best known for his public access TV show, Let’s Paint TV, which is equal parts painting tutorial, performance art, and unscripted comedy. While some may write off the show as absurdist comedy, Kilduff’s intent is actually quite noble: he wants to encourage you to paint – and even if the finished piece isn’t perfect, at least you tried. The process is what’s most important.
This kind of perseverance and full acceptance of failure is exemplified on his TV show, whether Kilduff is running on a treadmill while simultaneously blending health drinks and painting, or riding a bike while shaving and painting.
To add to the spontaneity, Kilduff takes live, unscreened calls during his shows, which sometimes results in callers citing gang affiliations or shouting rude comments. And all of this is edited in Kilduff’s signature psychedelic style. It’s no wonder Kilduff is the inspiration behind comedian Eric Andre’s The Eric Andre Show.
Beyond his comedic chops, John Kilduff is also a talented artist who received his degree from Otis College of Art and Design in 1987, a MFA in Painting from UCLA in 2008, and has exhibited at galleries across the United States, including, most recently, the Daniel Rolnik Gallery in Los Angeles. He paints all types of subject matter – from the farcical to the serene (Kilduff is a gifted plein air landscape painter).