Michael Kenna was born in 1953 In Widnes, Lancashire, England. He studied Fine Arts, specialising in photography, at Banbury School of Art, Oxfordshire, then continued to the London College of Printing, 1973-1976.
It was at this time that Kenna saw the exhibition “Land” at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, an exhibition organized by Bill Brandt. Kenna acknowledges the influence of many photographers including Emerson, Atget, Stieglitz, Callahan and Ruth Bernhard, but none as strong as that of Brandt, known for his dark, melancholy photographs of England’s industrial north.
Since the late 1970′s Kenna has made his home in the USA while taking on different projects in England, the USA, France, Japan and other countries in Asia. His most notable early photographic studies are of Ratcliffe Power Station in Nottinghamshire, the Rouge Steel Plant in Dearborn, Michigan and Andre Le Notre’s gardens in France.
Kenna is mostly known for his landscapes, taken in low light, often between dusk and dawn. He alludes to a theatre stage set and the time between the curtain opening and the actors appearing. “It is the waiting and what happens in that interval of time that interests me. I try to leave space in my photographs so that viewers can participate in the scene and even create their own story…I prefer suggestion over specific description, haiku over prose.”
Kenna’s talent has led to major exhibitions and the publication of handsome catalogues and books of his photographs. His reputation is now established as an outstanding photographer whose work is much sought after throughout the world.
For a comprehensive list of Michael Kenna’s publications, awards and exhibitions please visit his website at http://www.michaelkenna.net/