Jonny Kemp lives in South Norwood, SE25.
Although he has always loved to paint and draw, he works full time as an English teacher. He has no formal art qualifications beyond A Level Fine Art.
In the best moments of reading, "it is as if a hand has come out and taken yours.” We find recognition and understanding in a work possibly written by a writer long dead. Jonny believes visual art should do the same.
Alike to great literature, he thinks we should be able to see ourselves in painting and drawing. We might not like what we see, but it should be recognisable. In this way, it should bring people together: communities, dispossessed individuals and groups.
For Jonny, the best art casts a sardonic sideways glance at the overlooked banalities of life, and asks: why are we doing this? Why do we talk like that? What makes us act like that?
What makes us accept the way things are?
He's explored the importance of community through his ‘South Drawood’ exhibition, celebrating the people of his local area. His future project is to portray commuters asleep on their way to work.
He has sold his work at markets and online since summer 2021.