Monday, 15 June 2015

Well a' don't know how tae change things but, by Christ we got tae try

Inages from 'New Image Glasgow', 1985.

War - Ken Currie, 1983

A brand New World was Comin' - Ken Currie, 1985 (Conté on paper)

Life grew harder day by day, All along the riverside - Ken Currie, 1985 (Conté on paper)

Well a' don't know how tae change things but, by Christ we got tae try - Ken Currie, 1985 (Conté on paper)

Ken Currie quote:
"[My aim is to] create an epic socialist humanist art that shows in political terms a 'pessimism of the intellect, but an optimism of the will.'  They are disciplined by a realism in form and content - this being neccessary as it is the language of accessibility and democracy - capable of touching the heart and mind of an audience all too familiar with the story."
Meanwhile, Steven Campbell predicted the future with this one:

Nasal and Facial Hair Reactions to Various Disasters - Steven Campbell, 1985


  1. It's funny, after your previous post, I was going to jump in and mention the cover to Robert Wyatt's "Ship Building" single (which I now discover was actually painted by Stanley Spencer in the 1940s:, just as an example of the kind of imagery that seems to completely epitomise the '80s-in-the-UK aesthetic to me.

    Ken Currie's work as posted above is obviously in a very similar lineage, and I have definite memories of this kind of stuff being absolutely *everywhere* when I was growing up - in library books, educational programming, art galleries, record covers, underground comics.... presumably in very conscious and deliberate opposition to the more yuppie/consumer culture focused imagery that will no doubt immediately pop up if you dare type "1980s stuff" into google search...

  2. Probably a bit of that and - more so in the fine art world - a reaction against the dominant art of the previous decades, ie abstract and conceptual. The return of figurative art and narrative was a Big Thing at the time.