The artist as director

The latest work from the artist Sam Taylor-Wood made its debut in London last week. But it wasn't in a gallery. "Nowhere Boy", a fictionalised biography of the teenage years of Beatles founder John Lennon, was the closing film at the London Film Festival. The story concentrates on a period in the young musician's life when he discovered the truth behind why he had been raised by his aunt, and the bitter-sweet discovery of his mother living a short distance away.

Should The Art Newspaper be writing about "Nowhere Boy" at all? We very rarely review works of art. And, even then, the film is not a work that could conceivably come under the category of the "fine arts". But when an artist with headline grabbing potential of Ms Taylor Wood makes a work, it's news.

A high-flyer in the YBAs with an impeccable art world pedigree (she recently separated from White Cube head Jay Jopling), and a Turner Prize nominee in 1997, Taylor-Wood has the connections that allow her to try most things that might take her fancy. A quick stint as a would-be pop star? No problem, out comes a version of the Passions' 1981 one-off hit "I'M In Love With a German Film Star", overseen by her friends The Pet Shop Boys.

And when film-directing ("conventional" narrative as opposed to artists' film) grabbed her attention, it was with the support of her friend, the late director Anthony Minghella, that she made the coming of age short "Love You More". Unusually for a first short feature, it found itself in the main competition in Cannes.

Of course such cross-overs have a notable history. Steve McQueen's "Hunger" was certainly a recognisable piece of narrative cinema, but wore its "arthouse" sensibilities with both credibility and no self-consciousness-a foray into another category of representation, but still recognisably a key part of the artist's body of work.

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