AAP Magazine #7 - Wild

Michael Kenna

English Photographer | Born: 1953

Michael Kenna was born in Widnes, England in 1953. As one of 6 children born to a working class Irish-Catholic family, he initially aspired to enter the priesthood but his passion for the arts led him to The Banbury School of Art where he studied painting and then photography. Later he attended The London College of Printing and began working as a photographer and artist. He moved to San Francisco in 1977 where he was astounded by the number of galleries the city housed which allowed artists to showcase and sell their work. San Francisco has remained his home ever since.

Michael Kenna's work has often been described as enigmatic, graceful and hauntingly beautiful much like the Japanese landscape. Kenna first visited Japan in 1987 for a one-person exhibition and was utterly seduced by the country's terrain. Over the years he has traveled throughout almost the entire country constantly taking photographs. From these many treks the book Japan, featuring 95 of these photographs, was conceived.

The simplicity and clarity of Kenna's Japan alludes to rather than describes his subject allowing the viewer to have a completely unique and tailored interpretation. He has described this body of work as, "more like a haiku rather than a prose"; his work being like photographs written in short poem form. Kenna's photographs are often made at dawn or in the dark hours of night with exposures up to 10 hours. Kenna has said "you can't always see what's otherwise noticeable during the day... with long exposures you can photograph what the human eye is incapable of seeing".

Michael Kenna's prints have been shown in numerous exhibitions throughout the world with permanent collections in the Bibliotheque, Paris; The Museum of Decorative Arts, Prague; The National Gallery of Art, Washington DC; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Kenna has also done a great deal of commercial work for such clients as Volvo, Rolls Royce, Audi, Sprint, Dom Perignon and The Spanish Tourist Board. Japan is one of 18 books of Kenna's photography to have been published to date.

Source: Supervision


With more than fifty monographs documenting his travels, Michael Kenna shows no signs of slowing down in his endless pursuit of nature's haunting beauty. Whether working in his native England, Easter Island, the coastal towns of France or the islands in Japan, Kenna seeks places of solitude which speak volumes about humanity.

Barren seascapes, abandoned fishing nets, fragmented piers, mysterious horizons, trees emerging from under snow drifts Ė these are just some of the images which dominate Michael Kenna's work from Japan. The result of his efforts can be seen in two books, Hokkaido (2006) and Japan (2002), both published by Nazraeli Press.

His newest book, Mont St Michel, continues his passion for solace. Originally built as a community for Benedictine monks, Mont St Michel became a place of prayer, meditation and silence. Kenna made may journeys to Mont St Michel, staying for days at a time, living among the residents, following their codes of silence and prayer. Armed with a camera, Kenna walked the halls, crypts and towers, watching shadows sneak their way around columns and spires, recording the passing of time.

Mont St Michel is dedicated to Michael's father who recently passed away. As Kenna states in his introduction: "My dad was a quiet man, he didn't seem to have a need to talk very much...We walked pretty much everywhere, and I liked to walk with my Dad...I think the time in-between destinations was most special for me. We didn't need to say very much to each other. Walking, observing, listening, waiting. Somehow I associate those walks with my time at Mont St Michel...He taught me that it's alright to walk alone sometimes."

Whether photographing in Mont St Michel, Japan, China, or the United States, Michael Kenna invites the viewer to walk along with him as he captures moments between events, when human presence seems right around the corner and silence is always present...

Source: Catherine Edelman Gallery

Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Michael Kenna
Forms of Japan
Author: Yvonne Meyer-Lohr, Michael Kenna
Publisher: Prestel
Year: 2015 - Pages: 304
This beautiful book presents a meditative, arresting, and dazzling collection of 240 black-and-white images of Japan, made over almost 30 years by the internationally renowned photographer Michael Kenna. A rocky coast along the sea of Japan; an immense plain of rice fields in the snow; Mount Fuji towering over misty wooded hills; silent temples devoid of people but brimming with Buddhist deities; a Torii gate mysteriously emerging from moving clouds and water--these are a few images from this remarkable collection of photographs by Michael Kenna, whose black-andwhite work is highly renowned. Forms of Japan, brilliantly designed by Yvonne Meyer-Lohr, is organized into chapters simply titled, "Sea," "Land," "Trees," "Spirit," and "Sky." The quietly evocative photographs, often paired with classic haiku poems of Basho, Buson, Issa, and others, provide a contemplative portrait of a country better known for its energy and industry. Gorgeously reproduced to convey the enormous subtleties that exist in Michael Kenna's traditional black-and-white silver prints, the photographs in this book include both well-known and previously unpublished images from all corners of Japan: Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, Okinawa, and Shikoku.
 
France
Author: Michael Kenna
Publisher: Nazraeli Press
Year: 2014 - Pages: 312
Nazraeli Press is thrilled to announce Michael Kenna's long-anticipated monograph on France. Kenna first visited France in 1973 and has been photographing there since the early 1980s. He has produced thousands of photographs on subjects such as Mont St Michel, Le Notre's Gardens, the Calais Lace Factories and Chateau Lafite Rothschild. 'France' encompasses work from these projects and many others. Comprising 275 duotone plates, this gorgeous new book was edited by the artist himself, who selected both well-known and previously unpublished material from his own archive.
 
Huangshan
Author: Michael Kenna
Publisher: Nazraeli Press
Year: 2011 - Pages: 72
Huangshan is the name given to a whole range of mountains in Anhui province in eastern China. Also called Yellow mountain, the range is particularly known for its uniquely-shaped granite peaks, ubiquitous pine trees that literally grow out of the rock faces, and the ever changing configurations of flowing clouds as seen from above. Huangshan has been a source of inspiration and a muse for Chinese painters and poets throughout history. It continues to inspire artists today, including Michael Kenna. These forty-six photographs, which Kenna made over a period of three years, capture both the sublimity and grandeur of these peaks, and quietly reflect on our human interaction with nature. Kenna has written a brief introduction which describes some of his experiences on Huangshan.
 
Retrospective two
Author: Michael Kenna
Publisher: Nazraeli Press
Year: 2005 - Pages: 172
Published as a companion book to the artist's Twenty Year Retrospective, Michael Kenna: Retrospective Two presents an overview of Kenna's landscape photographs made between 1994 and 2004. Michael Kenna is arguably the most influential landscape photographer of his generation. The subject of over 20 books and hundreds of solo exhibitions throughout Asia, Australia, Europe and the United States, Michael Kenna often works at dawn or during the night. He concentrates primarily on the interaction between the ephemeral atmospheric conditions of the natural landscape, and human-made structures and sculptural mass.
 
Michael Kenna: A 20 Year Retrospective
Author: Michael Kenna
Publisher: Nazraeli Press
Year: 2003 - Pages: 168
This book is a wonderful introduction and overview of the career of Micheal Kenna. Kenna's long-lived exposures and unusual eye for his subject material are unmistakably unique It is no wonder he is considered one of the world's most collectible photographers and apppeals to collectors just beginning to develop an interest in photography.
 
David Bailey: SUMO
 
 

More Great Photographers To Discover

Marcel Van Balken
Nationality: Netherlands

Marcel van Balken is a self-taught photographer from the Netherlands for about 40 years. As a photographer he is interested in specific themes and conceptual photography. He believes in working thematically with an absolute preference for surrealistic and creative photography. He gives himself a kind of theme or assignment and will not stop making photographs unless he thinks he got everything out of this assignment.

Marcel moves as a photographer ideally in (…)
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
Marcel Van Balken
 
Bryan Schutmaat
Nationality: American
Born: 1983

From www.bryanschutmaat.com
About Grays the Mountain Sends: This project combines portraits, landscapes, and still lifes in a series of photos that explores the lives of working people residing in small mountain towns and mining communities in the American West. Equipped with a large format view camera, and inspired by the poetry of Richard Hugo, Iíve aimed to hint at (…)
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
Bryan Schutmaat
 
Jane Paradise
Nationality: American
Jane is a San Francisco and Cape Cod based photographic artist and is a trustee of the Provincetown Art Association and Museum (PAAM) and former Deputy Director of the International Museum of Women. Her photographs are held in public and private collections in the United States and Europe. Jane has exhibited widely and her recent work includes a series on women in their 90ís aging in America that reflects both beauty and sadness irrespective of physical circumstances.
 
Emmanuel Monzon
Nationality: French
Born: 1966
Emmanuel Monzon is a photographer and visual artist based in Seattle, WA. He graduated from the Academy of Beaux-Arts in Paris, France with honors. His work has been featured throughout the US, Europe and Asia (through exhibitions, selections and various awards). Through his work, he explores and questions the signs of urban sprawl in our visual field. His photographic process is being influenced by his background as a plastic artist.

Statement
What (…)
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
Emmanuel Monzon
 
Alison Wright
Nationality: American

Alison Wright, a New York based documentary photographer, has spent a career capturing the universal human spirit through her photographs and writing. For many of her projects Alison travels to the remotest regions of the globe photographing endangered cultures and people while documenting issues concerning the human condition.

Wrightís photography is represented by the National Geographic Society and has been published in numerous magazines including (…)
 
N. Jay Jaffee
Nationality: American
Born: 1921 - Died: 1999
Born Nathan Jaffee to Isidore and Anna Jaffee, N. Jay Jaffee was raised in various Brooklyn neighborhoods, from Brownsville to East New York to Brighton Beach. After a difficult childhood, and the death of his mother when he was 15, he left school to work as a typesetter. In 1947, fresh out of the army, recently married, and struggling to reconcile his experiences of war with the society to which he returned, Jaffee picked up his camera. He had been an infantry squad leader (…)
 
Patrick Joust
Nationality: American
Born: 1978

From positive-magazine.com
Patrick Joust is a 32 year old photographer living in Baltimore, Maryland. Born in Oroville, California, Patrick has gone back and forth between both coasts of the United States, before settling permanently in Baltimore in 2006 where he works as a librarian for the city library system. He started to take photography seriously about 8 years ago, but it wasnít until he lived in Baltimore that he finally started to regularly capture and (…)
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
Patrick Joust
 
Ayumi Tanaka
Nationality: Japanese

From ayumi-tanaka.com
Ayumi Tanaka is a Japanese-born artist, living and working in New York City. She received a BFA from Osaka University of Arts in Japan in 2002, and studied at International Center of Photography in 2010. She has been working on reminiscences of fairytales composed of three-dimensional mixed media and photography. Her work has been presented (…)
 
Laura Heyman
Nationality: American
Laura Heyman was born in Essex County, New Jersey. She received a B.F.A in photography from University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA, and an M.F.A. from Cranbrook Academy of Art in Bloomfield Hills, MI.

Heymanís work has been exhibited at Luggage Store Gallery, San Francisco, CA, Deutsches Polen Institute, Darmstadt, DE, Ampersand International Arts, San Francisco, CA, Senko Studio, Viborg, DK, Silver Eye Gallery, Pittsburgh, PA, The Palitz Gallery, New York, NY, (…)
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
Laura Heyman
 
Yusuf SevinÁli
Nationality: Turk
Born: 1980

SevinÁliís images are highly personal, subjective and dreamlike, in which place and time are uncertain, redolent instead of a deeply felt vision of the world. His fleeting images of everyday life have an air of timelessness about them. Aesthetically and formally they manifest SevinÁliís respect and deep engagement with the history of photography.

Yusuf SevinÁli earned a bachelorís degree in communications at Marmara University (Istanbul) in 2003, and (…)
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
Yusuf SevinÁli
 
David Bailey: SUMO
 
Join our newsletter
Be up-to-date with call for entries, deadlines and other news about exhibitions, galleries, publications, & special events
 
AAP Magazine#7 Wild
 
Discover the 5th Issue of AAP Magazine
All About Photo Magazine showcases the winners of AAP Magazine Competitions
 
 
 
The Jules Maeght Gallery is a contemporary art gallery who seeks to engage the San Francisco community by infusing European artists, young and established alike, into a diverse, multimedia dialogue.
 
TAKES U TO THE NEXT LEVEL
 
Since 2005, your guide through contemporary art from a French perspective to let you make exciting choices