Ketna is a highly prolific British-Indian multi media artist. Born in East Africa, educated in UK, and based in South East Asia for the two decades, she uses her training in Design and Architecture to map observations gleaned from her compulsive travels onto an existentialist, yet to be defined new global anthropology that is fast emerging.
Having just transplanted her studio from Singapore to two 'travelling studios' in the UK and India, she describes herself as happily tri-cultural, yet deeply grounded in an evolving human identity; beyond the rapidly evaporating boundaries of nationality and geography. She believes that for most artists, there is no divide between their ‘private’ life and their ‘professional’ output. All realizations and insights gleaned from inter-personal relationships, travels, media etc can be transmuted into a heightened awareness / expression of where human society is at today, and possibly where it may be heading towards....
Her subject of enquiry for the last few years has been ‘the Rural-Urban’ divide, and how Globalization and an increase in metropolitan living impacts on individual / national and collective human identity. Jon and her have recently acquired a large Methodist chapel in a former mining town in Wales, UK, and they are currently converting this into a live laboratory for investigating this subject further. Additionally, Ketna spent most of last year co-organizing and participating in Art Residencies in the small villages of Gunehar, Himachal Pradesh and Raghurajpur, Odisha (India).
Jonathan Reading was born in Wales, U.K in1962.
He is a self-taught artist; a graphic visionary. His styles and inspirations draw from a strong wealth of Eastern and Western ideas of harmony and proportion fused with a passion for Vedic traditions. His Art can best be described as Pop Neo Classical; a postmodern schizophrenia.
“After spending most of my life in and out of Asia I am returning to Britain and to my native born country of Wales. It comes as no surprise that my initial travels to India and Asia on the quest for God and spirituality back in the 80s have led me full circle and I have ended up co-purchasing an old church in South Wales! At last I can say I am at home with the creator! In the words on TS Elliot “We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we began and to know the place for the first time."
My journey and life’s path so far has been rather unusual to say the least. From my early days of shaving my head to live with Indian holy men to trading in Led Zeppelin for Ravi Shankar, I substituted my love for British rock music to study the Sarod; an ancient Indian stringed instrument. I have been fortunate to have met many inspirational people and remain humbled in the presence of some great artists and spiritual teachers.
In between propagating Indian philosophy, refurbishing casinos, creating and promoting art, I find myself battling with a passion for a renounced simple life and the love for my Rolls Royce and customized motorcycles.... and so happily a state of self-imposed identity crisis prevails!
To further confuse the situation in 2015 the government of India granted me 'P.I.O' immigration status and proclaimed that although born a Caucasian from the Welsh valleys I was in fact an Indian 'P.I.O' (Person of Indian Origin) and the 'country of my origin' welcomed me back with open arms conditional to me not voting or owning agricultural land of course. !
Stay tuned ....these are strange times indeed!
Jon playing at Pune's famous Shisha cafe, Pune, India
Jon playing at Aurovalley Ashram, Rishikesh, India
Jon in concert with his sarod guru Shekhar Borkar, London