who setken is

 
 
Beginnings

Late last century, I was faced with a choice: living in Adelaide and having being accepted into the Centre For the Performing Arts as an actor, and the Stanley Street School Of Art, I chose the former and my artistic life pursuing performing arts commenced. But . . . . . 

 

In November 2010 a lifelong desire to visit Egypt was realised. By the beginning of 2012 my urge to artistically express the Ancient Egyptian Gods—theNetjeru—was so great that I picked up a paintbrush and began painting again for the first time in over 20 years.

 

I have not stopped since.

 

I describe my paintings as “Nouveau Kemetic”, “Neo Kemetic”, and “Neo Pharaonic”. All of these terms speak to the inherent Ancient Egyptian themes that my paintings centre upon and the new take on those themes also. I use a Kemetic (i.e. Ancient Egyptian) name as my painting moniker because I paint Kemetic themed work. The name Setken is also the brand name for my art, and the cartouche logo is my trademark.

The Blake Prize and The Director's Cut

I went through a phase of entering my paintings into competitions, and three of my paintings were selected for the non-prize winning arm of the Blake Prize For Religious and Spiritual Art called "The Director's Cut". The Blake Prize has undergone some changes in its administration and it appears that now - or certainly from the 65th Blake Prize - the Director's Cut is no longer a part of the competition.

In the 62nd Blake Prize (2013) two of my works were selected and featured in the online gallery of same. The pieces were Winged Set and The Artist As Beloved Of Heru And Set.

 

.In the 64th (2016) Blake Prize Director's Cut my painting This Has All Happened Before And This Will All Happen Again, was selected. This painting is also featured on the cover of an Egyptology book.

Profane Egyptologists

My Blake Prize Director's Cut finalist painting from 2015, This Has All Happened Before And This Will All Happen Again, is featured on the cover of an academic book by Egyptologist Dr. Paul Harrison

I began correspondence with Paul some years ago when I was undertaking my research trip to the United States to explore how Kemeticisim and Ancient Egypt was manifesting in that country today - Paul had undertaken similar before me and I was asking his advice. The selected painting is in fact from my series created out of that trip, The Netjeru In America.

I am thrilled that the painting was selected for the cover of the work, which Paul has taken some 9 years to research and create. 

The book was published on December 22 of 2017. I received my copy of the book on the day of the installation of my debut exhibition. You can watch me opening the package here.

 

Background

I was born and raised in Adelaide, South Australia. I am now based in Melbourne, Victoria. Whilst I am not entirely shifting away from performance art, I do much less of that now than ever. I am at the easel way more often now.

The sacred expressing Itself through art is of great interest to me: I casually study comparative religions through education resources like Audible, podcasts, and traditional learning. I have a deep interest in the elements of the soul that I refer to as soul anatomy, most especially as expressed by the Ancient Egyptians.

I was a subject of the Profane Egyptologist podcast, and my interviews (it was a 2 parter) covered a lot of ground with interesting questions asked by the podcast host Paul Harrison (who wrote the book of the same name!) Part 1 goes into my background and the events leading to my painting career, and Part 2  goes into detail with some of my paintings. I feel that these interviews are so insightful, so perceptive of the background and work of my art that I honestly believe I don't need to do another interview - it's all here.

 

The artist in front of Akhet Khufu (the great pyramid), Egypt

The artist out front of the Temple Of King Seti I in Abdju (Abydos), Egypt

© 2012-2019 Setken

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