The painter Jan Meyer (Jan Meijer) was born in 1927 in Rolde (Drenthe) and grew up on the father's farm in the country-side. Meyer began drawing during the German occupation when he was interned at the concentration camp of Westerbork. Around 1944, he visited the studio of Werkman, who gave him advice on his early drawings (in 1945 Werkman was shot by the Nazis). Also, under his influence, Meyer developed a working method that took his work away and beyond the careful provincial life present in his earlier work.
After the war, he met Evert Rinsema, one of the oldest members of «De Stijl» and an old freind of Theo van Doesburg. Through him, he discovered and admired the work of Mondrian, and became acquainted with the Dada movement in Holland. Rinsema also introduced Meyer with Kirchner's expressionist work. Meyer's further life became a search for the equilibrium between the nostalgic values of a balanced world, and his expressive busy character.
During a short period Meyer Studied at the Rijksacademmmie and the Rijksopleinding Voor Tekenleraren in Amsterdam. At the end of 1940's his style evolved. He travelled through Europe and discovered the landscapes and the museums of the South (Spain, France, Italy). In the late 1940's Meyer's work was exhibited together with the work of artists of «de Ploeg». his palette was of a dominant mauve, black and dark-blue, with yellow planes breaking through.
The rough style of the french artist Dubuffet is visible ion paintings of Meyer of the 1950's; even though he didn't know the painter. From 1948, Meyer frequently exposed his work at the galerie d'Eendt in Amsterdam. His first (solo) exhibition abroad was in 1957 in Paris at the galerie Dina Vierny.
An important period in the artist's life was marked by his exhibition at the Premio Lissone during a stay in Italy. Famous abstract artists frequented this place, such as Fontana, Saura, Klein, Appel and Corneille. Jan Meyer's works can be assigned to the category of the «informele materie-schilders». In 1958, Jan Meyer was selected for the Grand Prix International de Peinture. In 1960 he settled permanently outside Paris, in Dieudonné a little village in the Oise. His frequent journeys- mostly to Greece- were an inexhaustible source of inspiration for him. He registered the images and worked them out in his studio once back home. Large thick layers of paint are placed over each other, often with a dissipation of many colours. Meyer's work can be found in several private and public collections such as in the Musée d' Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, the Tate Gallery in London, the Gemeentemuseum in the Hague and the Stedelijk Museum in Schiedam.