Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings

Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings
Ken Currie Three Oncologists

Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings intimately relates the artist’s worldview to his art through each phase of its evolution. In this book, for the first time we are given access to Currie’s private studio journals and email exchanges with art historian Tom Normand. Currie’s writings range from commentary on the creation of individual paintings to his personal responses to political upheaval, war and humanitarian disaster around the world.

Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings

Normand explains that while he found the prospect of publishing these private writings irresistible, Currie was at first reluctant. ‘The idea of publishing all this initially felt uncomfortable and went against my best instincts. The paintings, after all, must always do the talking.’

‘Words will never be a substitute for the difficult act of looking at an image, engaging directly with it and coming to terms, if at all, with the feelings it arouses,’ Currie says. Nevertheless, he committed himself to the project and what has emerged is a stimulating dialogue between the visual and the verbal on every page. Currie’s art is beautifully reproduced in full colour, charting his work from early paintings commemorating the massacre of the Calton Weavers to his artistic response to war; he addresses corruption, both physical and moral, with the honesty and courage that is also exemplified in his medical portraits.

Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings

‘I felt as though I had been allowed into a very grown-up world that unflinchingly grasped the reality of the human body and our mortality,’ Currie says on working with Sue Black, the renowned forensic scientist featured in The Unknown Man.

‘It was clear she had tremendous empathy for both the dead and the living, and her passion for her chosen field was compelling.’ Currie’s passion for his own chosen field is undiminished. His most recent work expresses his love of the Hebrides: ‘How did this happen? From the streets of Glasgow and Berlin, and their dark hearts which so captivated my imagination in the early days, to the Hebridean idyll. But this isn’t about romanticising that landscape. The places are haunted with tragedy.’

Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings

Launch: Saturday 9 December, 2.30pm
Gallery of Modern Art, 111 Queen Street
Royal Exchange Square
Glasgow G1 3AH
Publication date: Saturday 9 December
Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings compiled and edited by Tom Normand 9781804251263 Hardback £30.00
Ken Currie: Paintings and Writings LIMITED EDITION compiled and edited by Tom Normand 9781804251270 Hardback £100

©2023 Ken Currie

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