A part of moviedom that possibly no other fine artist has documented so creatively. And who could be more qualified to portray these sets on canvas and paper than Keni, the painter/artist who painted the actual sets.
Hollywood Backlots series of paintings and drawings has developed into a very extensive grouping of artwork created from some of the most famed and filmed real estate in the world.
–Stanley O. Williford
In 1975, Keni was taking an animation class in college. In order to finish his film for finals, he had to take his unprocessed 8mm stock to Kodak in Hollywood for overnight rushes. Two blocks from Kodak was a building with ‘Hollywood Stage’ painted in bold letters on a very large door.
On the day Keni picked up his last bit of film from Kodak, he stopped, out of curiosity, to see what took place behind that big, mysterious Hollywood Stage ‘elephant door’. He learned that they primarily built sets for television commercials and music videos. Keni was hired on the spot as a set builder, but soon found his calling painting sets and scenery.
Keni retired from the entertainment industry in 2011, having worked with all the major motion picture studios.
Keni completeed 30+ years as a set painter and scenic artist. Many of his lunch and coffee breaks were spent drawing and painting the sets, scenes, props and people who populated his workspace.