Jan Boelen (b. 1967, Genk) graduated as a product designer at the Media and Design Academy (KHLim), now the MAD Faculty, in Genk, Belgium. He currently holds the position of artistic director of Z33 in Hasselt (BE) and Head of the Masters Department Social Design at the Design Academy Eindhoven (NL). He is chairman of the architecture and design commission of the Flemish Community. Commissioned by the Permanent Deputation of the Province of Limburg, Jan Boelen reformed the Provincial Centre for the Visual Arts into Z33, a house for contemporary art. Since 2002, Z33 has been fashioning projects and exhibitions that encourage the visitor to look at everyday matters in a novel manner. It is a unique laboratory and a meeting place for experiment and innovation where one can discover cutting-edge exhibitions with contemporary art and design. Z33 does not have its own collection of works, but accommodates exhibition shows continuously.
In his curatorial work, Jan Boelen has collaborated with Raf Simons, Studio Makkink Bey, John Körmeling, Thomas Lommée, Dunne & Raby, Marti Guixé, Aldo Bakker, Konstantin Grcic, Joseph Grima, among others. In addition to the exhibitions at Z33 – House for Contemporary Art, Z33 also organises projects in the open space, as well as projects commissioned by other organisations. At the initiative of Z33 and the Province of Limburg, Manifesta 9 took place in Belgium in 2012. In 2014 he will curate the design biennal of Ljubljana in Slovenia and lead a series of international debates on the future of design.