Jan van der Ploeg (1959, Amsterdam) graduated from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, Amsterdam and Croydon
College of Art in London and was a resident at the Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten in Amsterdam.
In 1990 Jan van der Ploeg was awarded the Royal Award for Modern Painting.
He exhibited his work extensively in both solo and group exhibitions in Europe, North America, Asia, Australia, and New Zealand. Selected solo exhibitions include: Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Kunsthaus Baselland, Basel, Swiss; Kunstverein Heilbronn, Heilbronn, Germany; Minus Space, New York, USA; SNAP, Lyon, France; Concept Space, Shibukawa, Japan; Taubert Contemporary, Berlin; Renata Fabbri, Milano, Italy; Giacomo Guidi Gallery, Roma, Italia; Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago; Sarah Cottier Gallery, Sydney; Hamish McKay Gallery, Welington, New Zealand; Dunedin Public Art Gallery, Dunedin, New Zealand; ; Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, SCHUNCK, Heerlen, The Netherlands, MOTI Museum, Den Bosch, The Netherlands and the Gemeentemuseum in The Hague.
In 1999 Jan van der Ploeg the artist-run gallery, PS projectspace in Amsterdam.
Van der Ploeg likes to work with an organised and recognisable graphical visual language that he has carefully constructed throughout his career. Since 1997 he works with a basic form that occurs in many of his paintings and functions like an anchor amidst the endless potentiality of forms and shapes. This form that he metaphoricallly titled “grip” is a rectangle with rounded corners and has only in his recent paintings been slightly varied upon. Another recurring element is the use of patterns created through repetition of form. It is within this kind of methodologies and restrictions that Van der Ploeg excels; in limitation does the master reveal himself. Van der Ploeg paintings are closest to his sketching process which is the premises of all his art works. A careful process of planning and constructing that takes place before painting even begins. Making a composition is like shuffling with flat building blocks of graphical forms and experimenting with an infinite palette of tints and colours. This is Van der Ploegs confined playground wherein he finds the utter freedom and pleasure to create forever more surprising but very well balanced combinations.