J.A. Kennedy (b.1987) is a New Zealand-based artist.
Jon's creative project focuses on the idea of the experience of home and global social issues.
During his stay at the residency, Jon plans to engage socially with the local community by volunteering at the Episcopal Community Services . He plans to integrate his experiences at the shelter into his artwork.
Jon will also focus on making ceramic homewares and handmade table mats as part of his artistic practice.
In 2011, Jon volunteered in Mae Sot, Thailand, as part of the Spinning Top project based charity organization. While there, he worked with local schools on art projects:
"We were able to create an experience for children who live and work on landfills. Many of these kids were refugees from Myanmar (Burma). Our efforts gave the children a creative outlet, and a change in the regular curriculum."
In 2015, Jon was invited to take part in the Millerntor Gallery Project in Hamburg, Germany. The project gathers international creatives to address the problem of global insufficient water and lack of sanitation facilities, mostly in Northern Africa.
Jon's interests on social issues come from a variety of sources, including his nomadic lifestyle as a child and his multicultural background.
"My primary interest is the understanding of the term 'home'. Although I have worked on socially aware creative projects, I do not consider myself an activist; I am here to respond to my surroundings and do my part as a human being, lending a hand where and when I can. My practice is something I cannot describe overtly; the works I create are based on a selection of responses to the surrounding I find myself in. Painting is a way to record marks that are abstractly descriptive, like one person speaking a language to another who does not understand."
To learn more about Jon, visit: http://drypnzdrypnz.com/