Well known for her work with light, colour and space, Ann Veronica Janssens creates immersive experiences in which the viewer plays the leading role and is invited to engage in them physically and emotionally, in the best Op art tradition. Her works, often based on experiments conducted in collaboration with scientists, become laboratories for testing the boundaries between physical/material properties and elements regarded as opposites, such as light and darkness, sound and silence, emptiness and presence, the tangible and the incorporeal.
Janssens was born in the United Kingdom but grew up in Brussels, the city where she now lives and works. Her works have been characterised by using natural optical phenomena or glass as a medium. Produced with great care, they convey an impression of great simplicity while creating experiences based on the act of seeing, evoking a greater awareness of the mutability and transience of individual perception, around which all this artist’s work revolves.
In 1999 she represented Belgium at the 48th Venice Biennale, filling the space with a thick fog which served to disorientate viewers. In 2013 she added colourful glass monoliths to the windows of the Chapelle Saint-Vincent in Grignan (Provence), transforming the interior space into a setting of ever-changing colour.
The work of Ann Veronica Janssens has been presented in solo exhibitions at institutions of international importance, such as the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebæk (Denmark), the South London Gallery, the Musée de l’Orangerie in Paris, the Baltimore Museum of Art, the De Pont Museum in Tilburg, the Nasher Sculpture Center in Dallas, WIELS in Brussels, the Kunsthalle Bern, the Musée d’Orsay in Paris and the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin.
She has also taken part in important international shows, including Sharjah Biennial 14 (2019), Manifesta 10 in St Petersburg (2014), the Biennale of Sydney (1998 and 2012), the Lyon Biennale (2005) and the São Paulo Biennial (1994), as well as other collective exhibitions at institutions such as Kunsthalle Wien in Vienna, SMAK in Ghent, the Grand Palais in Paris, the Punta della Dogana in Venice (2019), the Hayward Gallery in London (2018), Mudam in Luxembourg, the Sprengel Museum in Hanover, the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo in Buenos Aires (2015), the Palais de Tokyo in Paris (2014) and the Fundació Joan Miró in Barcelona (2013).
The Hortensia Herrero art collection includes a work by Janssens in which we can see that exploration of colour and light through glass.