Simon Kennedy’s drawings of historical portrait photographs are his attempt to gain insight into what the photographer set out to capture. He initially views the photographs as inaccessible, alien encounters with history; slowly, as each image is transcribed onto paper, the subject reemerges as Kennedy’s own. Through his meticulous hand-drawn process of reproduction, Kennedy decodes and reanimate the original image, bringing the intangible presences of the sitters closer to us.
Simon Kennedy is a BFA graduate of the Otago Polytechnic School of Art in Dunedin. Before relocating to Sydney, he staged several solo exhibitions with Marshall Seifert Gallery in Dunedin and won the Waiheke Art Prize in 2005. His work has featured in numerous group exhibitions and art fairs in Sydney, Melbourne and New Zealand and has been collected by the New Zealand Parliament Collection, the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery and Artbank. Kennedy has been represented by Gallery 9 since 2007.