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Kenna attended Upholland College in Lancashire, the Banbury School of Art in Oxfordshire, and theLondon College of Printing. In the 1980s, Kenna moved to San Francisco and worked as Ruth Bernhard’s printer.
Kenna’s photography focuses on unusual landscapes with ethereal light achieved by photographing at dawn or at night with exposures of up to 10 hours. Since about 1986 he has mainly used Hasselblad medium format and Holga cameras and this accounts for the square format of most of his photographs. The main exception was for the photographs in Monique’s Kindergarten for which a 4 x 5 large format camera was employed.
His work has been shown in galleries and museum exhibitions in Asia, Australia, Europe and the United States. He also has photographs included in the collections of the National Gallery of Art inWashington, D.C., the Patrimoine photographique in Paris, the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, and the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. His photography of the ruins of concentration campswas featured in the opening credits of the Holocaust film Esther’s Diary (2010).
In 2000, the Ministry of Culture in France made Kenna a Chevalier in the Order of Arts and Letters.
In 2006, Kenna wrote the preface to Humans, a photo-series by Iranian photographerMohammadreza Mirzaei.
In 2011, Kenna wrote the preface to The Art of Adventure, a photographic monograph by Scottish photographer Bruce Percy.