The artist Jan Valentin Saether was born in Oslo, Norway in 1944. A student at both the National College of Applied Arts and at the National Academy of Fine Arts in the 1960s and early '70s he received training in both sculpture and painting.
In 1973 Saether moved to Los Angeles, California with his first wife and two young daughters. He built a career as an artist there and established several schools; first in 1977 at the old firehouse in Venice together with Alan Katz and Martine Vaugel, and later, in the 1980s Bruchion, a legendary school for art and gnosis together with his second wife, Liv Anderson.
In 1995 Saether moved back home to his native country Norway where he worked as associate professor at the National Academy of Fine Art, Oslo for a year before accepting the chair of figurative painting at the same institution after the media duel of the year as the only two painters found competent to hold this position were Jan Valentin Saether and his old friend from the student years, Odd Nerdrum. Saether held the position until 2002.
He is currently working on new projects and shares his time between his homes in France and Norway.