Still life? I hated it

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The Independent Online
AMANDA CURRIE is the type of controversial young artist whose work appears to have no connection with traditional drawing skills.

For her latest creation, she has been advertising in the farming newspaper, The Farmer's Guardian, for a piece of land 2000m long by 200m wide on which to mark out a full size emergency aircraft runway.

Ms Currie, aged 24, from Stoke Newington, London, did not study drawing at all during her three year fine arts degree at Wolverhampton College of Art or her two-year post-graduate diploma at The Slade.

But she did study it at school and during her arts foundation course and she believes it was essential in helping her arrive at the stage she has now reached.

"I had to spend hours and hours drawing all these still life objects as perfectly as possible and I found it really infuriating," she said yesterday.

"I hated it and thought the whole exercise was pointless, but my teacher advised me to get on with it because I had to do it to finish the course.

"I am sure, however, that all the time I spent paying attention to the right technique has helped me to develop what I am doing.

"It may sound strange, but I'm pretty much a traditionalist and I agree with what David Hockney is saying."

On seeing her later works, one could be forgiven for thinking of her as anything but traditional.

She once hired large industrial heaters and photographed them on a beach in Kent to portray a feeling of power.

She also persuaded all 85 householders in a village in Northern Italy to display Attenti Al Cane (Beware of the Dog) signs outside their homes as a statement about a macho streak in Italian society.

Now she is planning, literally, to become a landscape painter by using one the world's largestcanvases to produce art which can only be fully appreciated from a height of 5,000 feet.

"I want to produce a serious work of art that means something quite drastic to one particular group of people who know what it is and nothing at all to everyone else.

"It will not be dangerous because aircraft could actually land there, but that does not mean they will. The runway will not appear on aviation charts and pilots will know that they can't make radio contact with it."