Servie Janssen, Artist in distribution, Netherlands, 1949
Servie Janssen (1949, Eindhoven, the Netherlands) attended the school of arts in Maastricht in the early 1970s. He was trained as a painter, but started working with video and performance in 1972 when he began a postgraduate course at the Jan van Eyck Academy, Maastricht. Janssen belongs to the generation of Netherlands-based performance artists who became internationally successful in the late seventies, among them Marina Abramovic, Gerrit Dekker and Ben d'Armagnac. In his performances and videos Janssen uses his own body to explore human's physical functions and limits. His works show a deep reflection on the tension between well-considered thoughts and spontaneous creative acts. Inspired by travels and non-western cultures he goes through rituals that often last for as long as his body can take it. Not only do the image and action appeal to the viewer’s senses; sound and language are also important in the experience of his work. Janssen has presented his work in the Netherlands and abroad, and taught at the Minerva Academy in Groningen. Since 1983 he mainly expresses himself in painting, drawing, installations, projects, artist books and writing. He currently lives and works in Nijmegen.