Born in Antwerp (BE), works in Antwerp (BE), lives in Antwerp (BE).
The Antwerp visual artist and theatre maker Jan Fabre (b. 1958) is a multidisciplinary artistic phenomenon. He is an energetic performer who explores the limits of theatrical admissibility, and he is a dedicated visual artist who creates a universe with insects, scarabs and bic-drawings that abounds with mystical references, metamorphoses and personifications. Urges, desires, beauty and mortality are recurring themes, both on stage and in his visual work. The extent to which two blend together is already apparent in the 1978 performance "My body, my blood, my landscape": on stage, the artist carves into his own body and makes his first blood drawings on the spot. In the following years, he creates wedding dresses with green-blue beetles, inks night blue bic-drawings and makes gilded sculptures of animals and skulls. Fabre fantasises, glorifies and brandishes, yet hidden behind the dazzling beauty displayed, there is always a different world, a bloody and animalesque underworld. The figures that appear in his work are often angels, warriors, skeletons and animals. They are disguised messengers who emerge from the past to remind us of decay and destruction, of blood and suffering, of the animal in man and the human in the animal.
Text: Hans Willemse
Translations: Michael Meert
Items View all
Do we feel with our brain...
Jan Fabre, Do we feel with our brain and think with our heart?, 2013. Performance.
Dung Beetle with Frog's L...
Jan Fabre, Dung Beetle with Frog's Legs, 1993. Mixed Media, soil, wood, dung beetle and frog's legs, 22 x 80 x 60.5 cm.
The Creative Hitler Act
Jan Fabre, The Creative Hitler Act, 1980. Mixed Media, blackboard, chalk, sponge and scraps of newspaper, 57.5 x 20.5 x 50 cm.
Events View all
Kunstwerk van de maand 2015
01 January 2015 - 31 December 2015.
January: Jan Vercruysse – Fontaine/Lustre, 1991. February: Jan Fabre – Het fonteintje, 1980. March: Charif Benhelima – Minus two, 2006. April
Urgent Conversations Athe...
31 October 2016 - 05 February 2017.
Urgent Conversations: Athens – Antwerp is the first temporary exhibition in the long overdue public unfolding of the Greek National Museum of
Ensembles View all
Wetenschap & Experiment [...
Jan Fabre's fascination for the body and for science goes back to childhood days. The young Fabre liked nothing better than studying the wor
"... They cannot be reduced. They’re not representable. The claim of the complexity of their design is irreducible. They never give the impre
The Space of Grounded Ima...
THE SPACE OF GROUNDED IMAGINATION This description came to our mind when discussing the possible proximity of artists such as Jan Fabre,