janet grau

About me

As an artist, I like to work with people and I like to deal with issues that move people, such as language, culture and human connection. I rarely work alone, preferring to collaborate with other creatives or to use exchange and participation as part of the creative process.

My experimental, interdisciplinary performance-based projects function at the intersection of art and activism, and are primarily concerned with cultural phenomena, such as the practices of collecting and storytelling.

I seek to find – or invent – unexpected narrative structures and make complex issues accessible through performative and visual means. I take idiosyncratic stories, societal processes or subjects of scholarly research and playfully transform them into tangible allegories and visual experiences.

In addition to performance, I use photography, video and installation. I often incorporate drawings, texts and handmade objects into my installations.


*Born in Cleveland, Ohio/USA in 1964.
Have lived and worked in Germany since 1999, in Heidelberg since 2012.

  • 1995  –  Master of Fine Arts, The Ohio State University, USA
  • 1988  –  Bachelor of Fine Arts, Cleveland Institute of Art, USA
Prizes & Grants (selection):
  • 2024  –  SchUM Cities: Residency scholarship
  • 2021  –  Ministry of Science, Research and the Arts, Baden-Württemberg: Project funding grant
  • 2018  –  Baden-Württemberg Art Innovation Fund: Project funding grant
  • 2017  –  Cultural Office of the City of Heidelberg: Project funding grant
  • 2014  –  District Office Rhein-Neckar-Kreis: Purchase
  • 2010  –  Cultural Foundation of the Free State of Saxony: Project funding grant
  • 2008  –  City of Chemnitz: 1st prize, artwork in memory of Irmtraud Morgner
  • 2005  –  Kunstfonds, Dresden State Art Collections: Purchase
  • 2004  –  Ostdeutsche Sparkassenstiftung: Edition series Signifikante Signaturen
  • 2003  –  Gallery for Contemporary Art Leipzig: Project grant
Exhibitions, Performances & Projects (selection):
Group Exhibitions and Video Screenings (selection):
  • 2024
  • Kunstkammer Gegenwart, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Residenzschloss Dresden
  • 2023
  • Vergissmeinnicht – Museum der (un)entdeckten Erinnerungen, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Schloss Hubertusburg
  • An die Arbeit, Forum für Kunst, Heidelberg
  • 2020
  • KUNST(re_public), Halle 14, Leipzig
  • 2018
  • Museum of Untold Stories, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Japanisches Palais
  • 2017
  • Video ist wie ein Bleistift, Kunstverein Leimen
  • 2016
  • Deltabeben. Regionale 2016, Port25 Raum für Gegenwartskunst Mannheim
  • 2014
  • Ortsbestimmung. Zeitgenössische Kunst aus Sachsen, Görlitzer Sammlungen für Geschichte und Kultur
  • 2013
  • Mein lieber Schwan! ACC Galerie Weimar / pélerinages Kunstfest Weimar
  • 2011
  • Folge der Generationen Motorenhalle. Projektzentrum für zeitgenössische Kunst, Dresden
  • Entdeckt! Rebellische Künstlerinnen in der DDR, Kunsthalle Mannheim
  • 2009
  • Ohne uns! Kunst & alternative Kultur in Dresden vor und nach ’89, Ausstellung Prager Spitze, riesa efau. Kultur Forum Dresden
  • 2007
  • Hot Destination / Marginal Destiny Motorenhalle. Projektzentrum für zeitgenössische Kunst, Dresden
  • American Beauty, Galerie Baer, Dresden
  • Wenn der Sonnentau… Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden, Residenzschloss Dresden
  • 2005
  • DRESDENER PFLEGEN, (1,5 Min.) Kurzfilm für die DRESDEN-ROLLE Balance Film, Dresden
  • 2004
  • Der zweite Blick, Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst Leipzig
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