Ken Currie was born in 1960, and Graduated from The Glasgow
School of Art in 1983. It was therefore natural that Industrial
Glasgow was the subject for his early work, with paintings that
were linear in style and modelled in block-like forms. He was
labelled as one of the New Glasgow Boys along with Peter Howson,
Adrian Wisniewski and the late Steven Campbell who studied together
at the Glasgow School of Art.
Deeply affected by political and humanitarian events in Eastern
Europe, Currie began to depict decaying and damaged bodies as a
response to what he felt was the sickness of contemporary society.
In 1987, on the 200th anniversary of the Calton weavers Massacre,
Currie was commissioned to paint a memorial which is displayed on
the ceiling of the People's Palace.
Currie was commissioned by the University of Edinburgh to paint a
portrait of Peter Higgs, the theoretical physicist, which was
unveiled in 2009. He is a "reluctant portraitist", and this was
only his second portrait. He said, referring to the Higgs boson, "I
am very interested in Peter's work. I don't for one second claim to
grasp the theory, but I do understand the sublime, and there is a
sublime quality to it all, a beauty, an awesome quality. In some
respects, the subject is quite terrifying. "
Currie's paintings remain primarily concerned with the human
condition even though many of the images dealing with, for example,
metaphysical questions do not feature figures a human presence is
nevertheless always suggested.
Ken Currie's work can be seen in the collections of The Scottish
National Gallery of Modern Art; The National Library of Scotland,
Edinburgh; The New York Public Library; The Yale Center for British
Art, New Haven; Campbelltown Museum, Australia, and the Boston
Museum of Fine Art.
In 2013 Currie exhibited a solo show at The Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh.