many different strains.’ he says. ‘There were some punks that were into decadent stuff and looking outrageous and others who were into Rock against Racism. the Anti-Nazi league and bands like the Clash who were very much of the view that. yes. it can make a difference.‘
But for Hunter. there is also a desire not reveal too much
about himself. We see it in the almost manufactured look of
his works. coming back to this idea of leaving no visible trace of the artist‘s hand. ‘Maybe one of the reasons why I am political is that I'm uncomfortable with the idea of being intimate publicly with who I am.’ he says. ‘You have to be able to do that. You have to want to give something away about yourself.‘
While many of his peers are making an about the history of art or an about the self. his brand of political art has been unfashionable for at least a decade. ‘I think it's a reflection on society.‘ says Hunter. who has been based in Glasgow since 1983. ‘People aren't really that interested in politics. I can understand the rejection of party politics. but I think
what is won'ying is the ambiguity of ethics and the lack of
concem about engaging in a dialogue about political ethics.‘ Political tut may not be popular. but it still has its place.
Later in the year. Hunter will create a work for The 'I'huteher
Show at London's Blue Gallery which takes a critical look at the Iron Lady's years in power. In April. he is taking part in Sanctuary at Glasgow‘s Gallery of Modem Art which tackles the subject of refugees and asylum seekers. In May. he will
‘I am attracted to pivotal points in history,’ says Hunter who pre-empted 9/1 1 with Time and Space Died Yesterday (second top left)
'CERTAIN THINGS ARE DONE BETTER SLOWLY, FOR EXAMPLE COOKING OR SEX'
unveil his public art piece (,"IIIfI/(’(/ (Girl with Rue/(suck). which addresses the history of migration in and out of the Gorbals as part of a programme of artworks for the area. And Glasgow‘s (‘(‘A has commissioned him to create a new work for the space in September.
For someone who takes his time. Hunter certainly has his work cut out. l)espite enjoying international success — 'l'he Wilmington Post praised his 'obvious intelligence. meticulous craftsmanship and deep sense of history" — and getting commissions to create work for both public and gallery spaces. the financial pressure of making a living as an artist is still there. ‘lt gets more scary now as I’ve got a daughter and after the show I've got to think a lot more about what I do.‘ he says. 'In retrospect now though. choosing art school is probably about the same as going for a job in the bank because there is no job security anymore for anyone.’
()ne meeting with Hunter suggests he wouldn't be happy doing anything else. With new projects on the horizon and the chance to revisit older pieces in Freestyle Montmtehtul.’. he is doing what he does best. ‘I think an would help anyone avert a mid-life crisis.' he laughs. 'l've never had time to worry. I've got financial pressures but so have most people. I do what I want. I am happy with my work and I would definitely recommend it for that.~
Freestyle Monumental! opens at the Talbot Rice Gallery, Edinburgh Sat 15 Feb-Sat 22 Mar.
lit—27 tht. YHE LIST 15