Johannes Frederik van Slogteren (1904-1991) was born in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where he lived for many years.

His art teacher in primary school already noticed his talent and used his drawings to decorate the hallways. After school in 1916, his father decided his son should become a butcher. He learned the trade in a local butchery.

At the age of 18 he left home to follow his dream “to be a painter of the arts”  and he became successful. He took lessons from a wellknown female  painter, Sarika Góth and after a few lessons she told him “no need to spend more money” just continue the way you are painting.

He met his wife in 1933 and married her the same year. Two children were born, a girl in 1935 and a boy in 1938.

The years prior to World War II are described in the history of Holland as a depression period, however somehow he had to make a living to feed his family. He changed his style of painting and his work became  inferior to what he was used to. Retail furniture stores commissioned him and these paintings were used as “give aways” to well-to-do clients, who spent “big money”. He signed these  works with a pseudonym.

During World War II everyone had a bad time. Food was scarce. He travelled the countryside by public transportation and visited farms to exchange his paintings for food.

After World War II in 1945 Amsterdam was devastated. Reconstruction of apartments, houses and buildings began, however during this period nobody was interested in buying works of art.
He decided to emigrate to Canada with his family. For many years his 10 year older sister lived there. Unfortunately it became a big deception. He started out working in a beer-brewery and exhibited his paintings in a local cinema in St. John, New Brunswick. Many Canadian visitors loved his work but were not interested in buying. During his stay in Canada he sold three paintings.

He decided to return to the Netherlands where he faced yet another problem. No house to live in, so consequently he moved in with relatives. There was a huge housing shortage due to the destruction during the war, which resulted in long waiting lists for housing. After five months the family finally got a place of their own, a small apartment in the south of Amsterdam. Luckily there was an extra room on the top floor where he could paint.

As years went by he was able to make a living in painting again, mainly from commissions by private persons. These paintings he signed with his own name. His paintings were also exported to the Scandinavian countries and the U.S.A.

When he reached the age of 65 he received his State Pension which enabled him to live without worries about his income anymore. He as well as his wife were in good health and his children had their own families. He painted when he felt like it and the majority of his work was privately sold.

At the age of 84 he became ill and he and his wife moved to a retirement home on the countryside close to their daughter. He died in 1991 at the age of 86;  his wife who was 9 years younger passed away in 2004.

For more information please contact:
www.j.vanslogteren.n l©2009
Tekst: T. Hegt van Slogteren © 2009
Text: T. Hegt van Slogteren © 2009