Guido van der Werve was born April 7, 1977 in Papendrecht, The Netherlands. Being raised as a classical pianist, van der Werve joined the pre-year of the Rotterdam Conservatory after high-school. After attending many other universities like the TU Delft and studying classical Archaeology and Russian at the UvA, van der Werve was acccepted in the Gerrit Rietveld Academie (Amsterdam), with mainly paintings.
Changing painting for performance art was an early decision at the academy. But unwilling to perform his performances live, van der Werve started to registrate his performances. In developing these registrations van der Werve started to get more interested in film and the language of cinematography. In his first ever 3 min 35-mm film, 'Nummer twee, just because I’m standing here doesn’t mean I want to', van der Werve mixed performance with narrative.
After this he made a number of new films, all having numbers as titles. Key elements in these films are still the performance, but van der Werve has added music, text and atmospheric scenes as returning elements. Staying true to the basics of performances, van der Werve works with long shots (as if they were registrations) and refuses to work with actors.
Van der Werve’s work has been exhibited widely both in the art and the film world. In the film world his work has been shown at many major festivals like the Clermond Ferenq festival in France, the Viper festival in Switzerland and at numerous smaller and independent festivals. In the art world van der Werve’s work has been shown in venues like de Appel and the Netherlands Media Art Institute in Amsterdam, gallery Olaf Stüber in Berlin, Gallery Monitor in Rome and many others. Interviews have appeared in major newspapers, catalogues and art journals like Flash Art.
His work has been rewarded with the René Coelho award from the Netherlands Media Art Institute in 2003, and he was nominated for the Prix de Rome in 2005. Guido van der Werve has taught audiovisual arts in the Gerrit Rietveld Academie and in the Icelandic acedemy of fine arts in Reykjavik. Currently van der Werve is writing his first full length feature film and in 2006 he started a two-year residency at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam.