Newton artist Corey Janssens was invited to participate in the New York Film Festival Art Exhibit.

Held each fall in conjunction with the New York Film Festival, the art exhibit and competition features the works of artists from all over the globe.


Newton artist Corey Janssens was invited to participate in the New York Film Festival Art Exhibit.

Held each fall in conjunction with the New York Film Festival, the art exhibit and competition features the works of artists from all over the globe.

Janssens is a self-taught painter and sculptor. He was born in 1977 and spent most of his childhood playing in the woods with older brother, Charlie, in the small town of Derby.

From early in childhood, Janssens had a need to create alternative means of expression. He spent a lot of time drawing and building, with a focus on making statues, forts and little robots out of paperclips and torn-apart, discarded radios.

But his favorite medium at the time was Legos.

“Man, did I love those Legos!” Corey said. “Many hours were spent holed up in my room with those wonderful toys.”

After high school, Corey worked in the fast-food business. He reported a year of making sandwiches led him to believe that furthering his education might not be such a bad idea. He subsequently attended Wichita State University, majoring in sculpting.

Faced with the realization that all he could do with a sculpting degree was teach, which he did not think he had the patience for, he dropped out of school and enlisted in the Army. He served overseas as a UAV pilot and did a couple of tours in Macedonia and Kosovo. Even though those countries were engaged in civil wars and life was difficult for those citizens, Janssens found the people to be impressive, cultured and proud. They had an appreciation for life that busy Americans often forget.

Since leaving military service, Janssens has sampled a variety of jobs, including a few plays for a local theater troop, writing poetry and painting.

He is now an assistant to Conrad Snider and is able to pursue his first love of sculpting.

Janssens will travel to New York with a collection of new paintings and sculptures.

The New York Art Festival opens Sept. 18.