The abbreviation JVDV stands for the Dutch artist Jan van der Veer. His work is represented in a number of prominent Dutch corporate collections and in Dutch, Belgian and German private collections. As a chameleonic artist, he switches between abstraction and concrete representation. JVDV fuses abstract objects with realism in his art installations wherein he explores precise representation and imperfection with unusual combinations of paintings, objects, drawings, poems and multimedia.

In his upcoming book Being in the world means being in limbo (2021), JVDV includes 20 works and a poem, all freely alluding to a quote by the German philosopher Peter Sloterdijk, ‘In der Welt zu sein bedeutet in Ungewissheit zu sein’. The reader can slowly travel with the artist to gradually seeing connections developed during a process of three years culminating in the publication of this book.


From 2001 to 2016, JVDV has been working as curator, conceptual designer and art director on behalf of the learning institute De Baak with locations in Driebergen and Noordwijk aan Zee in the Netherlands. He encouraged programme participants at De Baak to connect to a wide variety of art, with an emphasis on contemporary visual works, poetry and design. Under his supervision, estate De Horst in Driebergen acquired a quirky and distinctive character through his architecture of ideas.

Unique at the estate De Horst is the room-suitcase-artist project; JVDV realised 71 thematically decorated hotel rooms that invite the guest to learn and discover*. Each room focuses on either an artist, writer, philosopher, architect, or designer within seven disciplines. Each room has – instead of a number – an intriguing name, such as Bach (Zaha Hadid), Descent into Limbo (Anish Kapoor) or Mondriaan (Hans van Manen). For this project, he collaborated with cultural institutions of national and international level. Furthermore, commissioned by De Baak, JVDV compiled the book art&leadership (2008) and the poetry anthology a poem by: (2011).

* This project is based on Cultivating Humanity by Martha Nussbaum, professor of legal philosophy and ethics.In her book Not for Profit, Nussbaum presents her thesis wherein she states that while dealing with the liberal arts,it is necessary to learn and unlearn. In the last chapters, she connects with the ambitious so-called ‘Bildung’ ideal.The term ‘Bildung’ (German concept of self-cultivation) is a theory attributed to the German scholar and diplomat Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767-1835). The concept speaks for a humanistic and a political ideal that is achieved through lifelong study of multiple subjects as general as possible.