These are wild times we are living in. And artist Ketna Patel makes that extraordinarily clear in her vivid art, replete with layers of symbolism and meaning.
Her website describes her work as:
Multi-disciplinary artist Ketna Patel, uses grand narratives and references to renaissance paintings that are embedded in all our collective consciousness. She attempts to flatten time, blur geographical boundaries, and bring to the fore a certain ‘consumption’ of contemporary culture that seems to be at a major penultimate moment before it eats itself into oblivion. There is beauty and death in this moment, and underneath it all, a small seed of a new beginning.
Ketna is a woman of the world, and her work reflects that in its East meets West sensibility. She is currently based part-time in Asia and part-time in Europe. She describes the idea behind this setup:
…we have entered a rather schizophrenic but exciting stage in our work practise……the idea is to ‘hover’ between the Eastern and Western hemispheres of this Planet, and convert this ‘bridge’ and its consequent observations into Art-making. So from Oct – March every year, we will based in Singapore + India, and from March to Oct (Spring + Summer), we will work from London + Wales.
In an article about the artist in the magazine Expat Living, Ketna describes the idea behind some of her most famous work.
I think there’s a need to demystify the stereotypes that surround Chinese and Indian art,” she explains. “Some of the stereotypical Asian art, in my opinion, doesn’t honour the vitality and humour of this region. I think Asia is actually very funny and eccentric and I try to use a language that is more present-day.
We live in a world over-flowing with advertising and junk mail. In my work you may see a photograph, a comic-book cut-out, or a newspaper headline. Whatever I have found over the years will find its way into my work as a means of telling a story.
She also has a collection of furniture that stands out from almost any other on earth.