Kaikki taiteilijat

John Court

Photograph by Ou Zhihang

He moved to Finland in 1997, and lives and works in Lapland. He was recently awarded a prestigious three year grant by the Arts Council of Finland.


John Court was born in 1969 in Bromley, in the county of Kent in England. He graduated from Camberwell School of Art, London in 1994 and from Norwich School of Art and Design in 1997 with a 1st class Honours degree in Sculpture.

He has exhibited extensively and has been invited to perform at major events such as Das Dicke Ende in Bern Art Museum Switzerland (2018), MA, Art Museum in Rouyn-Noranda Canada (2018), UP-ON Live Art festival Chengdu China (2017), SIGNAL Festival in Brussels Belgium (2017), Beijing Live in China (2016), Viva! Art Action festival in Montreal, Canada (2015), 7a*11d in Toronto, Canada, DigitaLive in Guangzhou, China (2014), SpaceX Gallery Exeter in UK (2012), Guangzhou Live Art Festival in China (2010), ANTI Contemporary Art Festival in Finland (2010), the Venice Biennale (2005) and the Liverpool Biennial (2004).

Installation view, part of the group exhibition 
Kuntsi Museum of Modern Art Vassa Finalnd  
Detail view of the exhibition on 
20 October – 25 November  2018 at the  
MA Art Museum, Rouyn-Noranda, Québec, Canada
8 DigitaLive Guangzhou China , 2014 Court John Performanssi
8, 8-hour performance, DigitaLive, YouYou. ContemporaryArt Center, Guangzhou, China, 2014
Detail view of the exhibition at Spacex Gallery, Exeter, UK, 2012

I am British artist living in north of Finland over 20 years. I work in the medium of performance, sculpture, drawing, prints, video and books. All my work is strongly performance based (the process of making the work itself ).

My work never starts as making an art work, it starts from an idea for performance or from a performance. When the idea of performance or the performance have been performed they have been activated (act—on) and have the possibility to become the art works. The ideas of my performance work which will be done, which have been done, and which will never be done ( title of art works: will-have-never ) are the base for the art works I am making now.”

I consider quite simply my art as making a body of work which I feel I have been developing since I have been making art from the age of 19 when it made sense to draw to express myself and to make sense of the world around me or trying to. What are we doing ? Why are we doing it ?  What does it mean ? and Why do we care ? For me the most important thing is not to answer the question but to ask the questions. These questions have always been with me from the beginning.

I hope I have questioned in all my art works my passions, fears, hate and love for the practice. For me this is the most important thing that the artwork speaks for itself.

I would actually consider the artwork as an artist statement therefore I would be very hesitant and confused to give you a written artist statement as I feel that the artist statement is in the work itself ? I do not write and cannot write the artists statement anymore because I cannot justify my words on the paper to the art work I make. In the text I feel so limited from the basic function of reading the writing in the everyday life. I feel the only place I can really express myself within reading, writing and trying to learn it is in the making of the art work.