Category: Exhibitions

Jurica Pušenjak
Bačva Gallery (Meštrović pavilion)
April 6-April 10, 2022

The opening of the exhibition by JURICA PUŠENJAK, HEROES will be on Wednesday, April 6 at 7pm, in Bačva Gallery, Home of HDLU (Meštrović pavilion).

“It is still very demanding to deal with World War II in our country. The liberation that came after the war was first romanticized and used as a lever of the socialist state system while (rightly) emphasizing the role of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia. Due to this, Oslobođenje became associated with the socialist state system and then relativized with its fall. Anti-fascism was thus also relativized, and I do not have to spell out the further consequences of this for you.

Within such a social context at the beginning of the second decade of the 21st century, the still young painter Jurica Pušenjak began to create his Monument to the Heroes of the National Liberation War, a hybrid work, that is, a painting object. It features 1315 portraits of the holders of the Order of the People’s Hero of Yugoslavia, according to the data from the Anthology of People’s Heroes of Yugoslavia, i.e., its third, complete edition from 1982. The reverse of the Monument is completely black. This colour is associated with the tragic end of numerous people’s heroes during the war, their fate in later society, when they were left to oblivion and their busts were removed from public spaces and their names from institutions. A colour that is, among other things, associated with fascism.

But black is also the colour of the land the partisans trampled and liberated (as the artist himself always points out) and the colour of rebirth. The colour of the fertile soil full of new sprouts and the colour used at the beginning of 2001: A Space Odyssey to mark the origin of the universe. Pusenjak’s Monument pulled the people’s heroes from the soil and oblivion, and I hope this marks a milestone on the path of their revaluation, on the path of the anti-fascist struggle they showed us, a struggle that is, obviously, still going on.

Numerous colourful faces on this work create a pop art-like impression. The People’s Liberation War also had a phase of kitschy, mostly propaganda, interpretations, most often in movies. Such movies, such as The Battle of the Neretva, served as Pušenjak’s inspiration for this work. Someone smart will proudly notice that his concept is just a “simulation of a simulation”. Still, I’m not nearly as smart. The colourful spectacle of the distant war and the darkness into which the war later fell (and from which it was originally born, and from which it will be reborn) are two equal sides of this work. They point to the duality of memory and the split in man and the society that man creates.

There is a reason society chooses to idealize or demonize certain historical figures or events. Collective imagination is what makes a community more stable (provides it with shared values), but also more susceptible to manipulation. Therefore one should constantly undermine the myth of the need for some stability. Put dynamite in the cracks of the concrete construction of the ruling ideology. This meant, at one point, rejecting pathetic and kitschy film spectacles like Kozara, Neretva or Sutjeska and giving precedence to powerful war prose (say, my favourite, Vitomil Zupan). But this also means reaching for their kitsch again, at a time when it can become a weapon of resistance against the system. For nothing, not even society can live in stagnation but only in constant change, and it can overcome its own limitations through change. The vision of the transformation of society offered by this work is cyclical, as emphasized by the double symbolism of black as the colour of death and birth.

Krleža used to say (as evidenced in Matvejević’s Conversations) that no monument should be erected if it is not going to be demolished at least twice. Because truly valid ideas are dangerous for the status quo and the rulers of society. But you do not have to be very smart or brave to demolish monuments – they have been demolished without a problem for millennia. To erect a monument, and especially to erect an old monument anew, takes at least a bit of heroic inspiration. Perhaps Jurica Pušenjak was guided by the spirits of the partisans while painting this work. He was certainly encouraged by David Bowie’s lyrics: “We can be heroes, just for one day.””

Feđa Gavrilović


Jurica Pušenjak was born in 1996 in Zagreb. After graduating from the School of Applied Arts and Design in Zagreb in 2015, he enrolled in the Painting Department at the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb. He graduated in 2020 in the class of Prof. Zoltan Novak with the ALU Academic Council Award for Best Graduate in the academic year 2019-2020. During his studies, he was awarded several times for his work. Since 2018, he has been a part of a series of group exhibitions, notably the 16th Erste Fragments in Lauba, 5th Biennial of Painting, and 6th Biennial of Painting at the Home of HDLU, „Tartaglia Shelves“ in the Forum Gallery (exhibition and co-authorship), and „They Are Leaving“ in the Glyptotheque of the Croatian Academy of Sciences and Arts. As part of the 6th Biennial of Painting, he won the Vladimir Dodig Trokut, Iva Vraneković – artists to artists Award. He is a member of HDLU.



Wednesday – Friday: 11am – 7pm
Saturday and Sunday 10am – 6pm
Mondays, Tuesdays and holidays closed.

Exhibition will be opened until April 10, 2022.


NOTICE ON THE RESULTS OF THE international, public, visual arts competition THE VICTIM OF VUKOVAR 1991


INVESTOR AND TENDERER of the competition is:

Ministry of Croatian Veterans’ Affairs, 1 Trg Nevenke Topalušić, 10 000 Zagreb,

OIB (PIN): 95131524528, Phone: 01/2308-833, 01/2308-524, Fax: 01/2308-894


Person responsible: Tomo Medved, Deputy Prime Minister and Veterans’ Affairs Minister


Institution in charge of ORGANISING and IMPLEMENTING the competition:

Croatian Association of Artists – HDLU (hereinafter: the Implementing Body), 16 Trg žrtava fašizma, 10 000 Zagreb,

OIB (PIN): 89246742324, Tel: 01/ 4611- 818


Person responsible je: Tomislav Buntak, President


TYPE OF COMPETITION: international, public, in the field of visual arts



The aim of the international visual arts competition The Victim of Vukovar 1991 is to establish a dialogue with contemporary art practices based on the culture of memory and symbolism of war suffering of the city of Vukovar and generate artworks that will be inscribed in collective memory. The competition was looking for four new works of art that had never been presented to the public.



In addition to the compliance of the works with the conditions of the competition (in terms of the content, deadlines and mandatory attachments), when evaluating the works, the Jury considered the following:

  • artistic excellence of the work;
  • research approach in the context of the culture of remembrance and symbolic value in commemorating historical trauma;
  • recognizability and clarity of the artistic expression and media poetics;
  • artist’s references.



  1. Branko Franceschi, art historian
  2. Kristijan Milić, film director
  3. Božica Dea Matasić, full professor of arts
  4. Tomislav Buntak, associate professor of arts
  5. Ana Holjevac Tuković, PhD in History
  6. Alen Novoselec, associate professor of arts
  7. Ivanka Bušić, mag.soc.



  1. Ruža Marić, Director of the Vukovar Municipal Museum



  1. A-létheia, sound spatial installation

Artists: Ida Blažičko and Alex Brajković


  1. Vukovar in Situ, photograph

Artist: Vjeran Hrpka


  1. Slušatelj (Listener), spatial installation

Artist: Vladimir Novak


  1. Fragmenti (Fragments), painting

Artist: Stjepan Šandrk



The competition works will be exhibited in the National and University Library,  4 Ul. Hrvatske Bratske Zajednice in Zagreb. The exhibition opening will be held on 17 November 2021.

Prostoria 10
Home of HDLU (Meštrović Pavilion)
September 25 – October 8, 2021

The exhibition Prostoria 10 marks the 10th anniversary of the well-known international furniture design brand with a strong manufacturing culture – Prostoria and opens its doors on September 25 at the Home of HDLU (Meštrović Pavilion). As an additional exhibition program, a temporary spatial installation “Prostoria Net”, designed by Numen/ForUse is being prepared and will be placed in front of Meštrović pavilion during the exhibition.

Openness to development and change, perseverance, and a spirit of research, guided by the creation of new values, ​​is a continuous process in Prostoria, which has matured into its legacy. This exhibition will present what it is made of, and visitors will have the opportunity to experience the brand itself much deeper. Namely, ten years ago, Prostoria developed from a hall for upholstered furniture in Zagorje into an industrial center for the production of all furniture elements, which goes from one place to public and residential interiors all over the world. The premise of product development in Prostoria is the so-called research-based design. The fact that this brand invests 10% of its annual budget in the segment of research, development and design shows how much importance is attached to the authenticity and quality of products.

Art Direction: Bureau architects. Photo: Marko Mihaljević.

It is important to point out that in a regional historical-geographical context, Prostoria emerged without an industry leader, only to embody it on its own over time. It grew on the ruins of the once numerous Croatian industrial furniture production, defeated in the transition from social ownership of Yugoslavia to capitalism based on competition.


Art Direction: Bureau architects. Photo: Marko Mihaljević.

The exhibition will also present for the first time the photographic project “Revisiting Architecture” by which Prostoria explores the roots of its design in the legacy of modernist Zagreb architecture – the Vatroslav Lisinki Concert Hall, Kockica, the City of Zagreb, and the Zagreb Public University. Namely, few places in the world have such a firmly rooted tradition of modernist architecture as is the case in Zagreb. It is a legacy that is the foundation and inspiration of the product design language Prostoria. “Revisiting Architecture” illustrates how selected products formally or textually refer to the environments in which they are photographed, sometimes emphasizing their origin, and other times their modernity. As a reflection of functional minimalism, Prostoria’s products deeply defined the contemporary Croatian culture of living. It has become an unavoidable inspiration for decorating private and public interiors, and at the same time, a rare design-oriented business leader in Croatia. Prostoria furniture is now available in over 60 countries and 1,000 premium selling spots worldwide.

PRESS CONTACT: Tatjana Bartaković,, + 385 99 815 2605


Exhibition opening hours:

Tuesday – Friday: 10 – 21

Saturday – Sunday: 10 am – 6 pm

Exhibition entrance is free of charge.


The exhibition remains open until October 8.

Visita Interiora Terrae: Myth and Alchemy as Art Practice
Prsten Gallery
August 27 – September 16, 2021

Tomislav Buntak, Manolo Cocho, Frnacisco Fernández Taka, Kristian Kožul,
Mia Maraković, Leonardo Martínez, Antonio del Rivera, MarkoTadić
Kustosi: Manolo Cocho, Maja Flajsig and Josip Zanki



The project Visita Interiora Terrae: Myth and Alchemy as Art Practice is based on the works of Croatian and Mexican contemporary artists who question and redefine the ideas of manifestation of the sacred – hierophany. The artworks deal with the fact that an ordinary space can be transcended into a sacred one and that ordinary, material objects can be transformed into works of art. The artists appropriate everyday objects, create new works (or show the existing ones) using the alchemical process of achieving the Philosopher’s Stone. The Stone embodies and transcends the infinite field of time and space, as well as the possibility for the works of art to become or be in simultaneity with the same. Through their work, the artists develop an awareness of material objects, metamorphosis and the forms of transformation of the world of appearances into the world without forms. The project aims to open up the spaces of artistic limitations and expand the field of discussion to the ontological status of objects and events as part of the sacral.

The curators of the project, Manolo Cocho, Maja Flajsig and Josip Zanki, have selected artworks rooted in interdisciplinary research; focused on the issues of establishing a relationship between contemporary art and sacred space, where sacred space is a place that enables the realization of rituals (the process of achieving the Stone) and the experience of reliving myth. The exhibited works touch upon the leitmotif that forms the outline of myth and alchemy, exploring the limits and possibilities of liberation from the positivist mind and the pragmatic world. The project is conceived in two parts, in Zagreb and Mexico City. The first part of the project consists of the eponymous exhibition at the Prsten Gallery of the Croatian Association of Artists from 27 August to 16 September and an academic conference at the Academy of Fine Arts, University of Zagreb on 2 September 2021. The exhibition will feature the works of Marko Tadić, Kristian Kožul, Mia Maraković, Tomislav Buntak, Manolo Cocho, Francisco Fernández Taka, Leonardo Martínez and Antonio del Rivera. The academic conference will feature the works of Maja Flajsig and Josip Zanki, Miguel Vassallo, Ana Ortiz Sánchez Renero and Rodrigo Fernández de Gortari. The project is supported by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia, Centro de las Artes de San Luis Potosí, Kronal, Aurora Co-Lab and Centro de Ciencias de la Complejidad.


Visita Interiora Terrae – predgovor – Maja Flajsig i Josip Zanki

MY+H ”vista interiora” – Manolo Choco, Josip Zanki




Nikola Vrljić
The Siege of Oz
Bačva Gallery (Meštrović pavilion)
August 27-September 16, 2021


The opening of the exhibition by NIKOLA VRLJIĆ, THE SIEGE OF OZ will be on Friday, August 27 at 8pm, in Bačva Gallery, Home of HDLU (Meštrović pavilion).

“In his current body of work The Siege of Oz, Nikola Vrljić, all the while with an intriguing distinction, is conceptually and formally continuing in the direction already set by his previous exhibition Cirkus!. Now, as it was then, the narrative is based on semantically only loosely related sculptures which, even if they remain associatively disconnected, function very well as stand-alone works of art. This approach allows the artist to keep organically building on this narrative, currently exhibited in Galerija Bačva, for the upcoming exhibition stages. […] In terms of content, Vrljić remains his generation’s most prominent representative of figurative sculpture, equally convincing when dealing with male, female or bestial motifs. […] For, Vrljić has won the acclaim of all those who had previously feared that competency in the traditional sculptural craft had vanished from the local arts scene. And indeed, already at the very onset of his career Vrljić had made a significant contribution to naturalism in Croatian sculpture. This is just as true of the robust, firmly erect, belligerent male characters as of the willowy bestial figures. […] I would say that it is exactly with material that Vrljić’s current deconstruction of traditional sculpting begins, a deconstruction that allows him to bridge the gap between the traditional and the contemporary form of expression. Vrljić creates his recent works in polystyrene sheets, stacking them up to the desired height, and then shaping them by cutting them into the desired form. […] Going back to the semantic layers of Vrljić’s work, as previously, his proclivity for the grotesque in both content and form is well pronounced. We could say that the chosen theme of The Siege of Oz, which sounds like a reckoning with the society of the spectacle, works in favour of his tendency to take a cynical commentary as a starting point in his interpretation of reality.”

from the preface written by Branko Franceschi



Nikola Vrljić was born in Zagreb in 1980. In the year 2007 he graduated from the Sculpture department at the Academy of Fine Arts in Zagreb. Since 2003 he has exhibited in 22 solo shows. Some of the recent ones are Citizens at Poola Gallery (2021, Pula), The Gathering at Antun Augustinčić Gallery (2019, Klanjec), Runaways at Josip Račić Gallery (2018, Zagreb). He has won multiple awards in different competitions for monuments and public works and is the author of a dozen public sculptures in Croatia. He is a member of HZSU and HDLU. He lives and works in Zagreb.


Wednesday – Friday: 11am – 7pm h
Saturday and Sunday 10am – 6pm h
Mondays, Tuesdays and holidays closed

Exhibition will be opened until September 16, 2021.


Ismar Čirkinagić (Bosnia and Herzegovina / Denmark)
The House in a Forest on a Coast
Bačva Gallery, Home of HDLU (Meštrović pavilion)
July 22-August 22, 2021

The opening of the exhibition by ISMAR ČIRKINAGIĆ, THE HOUSE IN A FOREST ON A COAST will be on Thursday, July 22 at 8pm, in Bačva Gallery, Home of HDLU (Meštrović pavilion).

“The House in a Forest on a Coast is a total installation composed of elements in various media of art. Horizontally, there is a representation of a house foundation covering the floor, whereas a large-scale representation of sails on a ship is vertically stretched out towards the ceiling, amid which a sound piece auditorily unites the two aces by veiling over all the exhibited components and resonating in the space between them. […] According to the artist, this systematic display of debris is a “re-enactment” of the Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD) routine, which often appears as a consequence of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Just as the debris convey memories about places that no longer exist in their original form, the clothes convey memories of bodies and persons who were once wearing them. The sails are, namely, sewn from the clothes that belonged to people who died as victims of violence with political backgrounds, such as armed conflicts, terrorist attacks and forced migration.

[…] The result is an artistic organisation of mnemonic elements from different geographical and historical contexts on display next to one another, which invites the viewer to interpret the exhibition from the transcultural perspective of humankind, rather than from specific national orientations. [The artist’s] desire is to show the universality of the human experience by focusing on similarities rather than differences among humans. […] Oneness with humanity is thus the key to unlocking The House in a Forest on a Coast. “

from the preface, written by the curator Tijana Mišković



Ismar Čirkinagić was born in 1973 in Prijedor, Bosnia and Herzegovina, which was a part of the Socijalist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. He came to Denmark in 1992, following the breakdown of the country and the brutal campaign of ethnic cleansing in his region of Northwestern Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 1997 Čirkinagić enrolled at the Copenhagen Art School and remained there until 2000 when he was admitted to The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. Most of his artistic practice is thematically related to the socio-political themes and mainly produced in the form of a conceptual installation consisting of videos, photos, texts, and object-based elements. In recent years he has had exhibitions in museums and kunsthalle in Denmark and internationally. Čirkinagić’s artworks can today be found in several Danish public collections.


Wednesday – Friday: 11am – 7pm h
Saturday and Sunday 10am – 6pm h
Mondays, Tuesdays and holidays closed

Exhibition will be opened until August 22, 2021.

Special thanks to:

Afghanistan: Guilda Chahverdi, Mohsin Taasha and Jawad Zawulistani from Afghanistan Human Rights and Democracy Organization, The Royal Danish Embassy in Afghanistan

Croatia: Udruga Kamensko

Egypt: Embassy of Denmark in Egypt, Khaled Ramadan and Yara Mekawei

El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras: Marcela Turati from Quinto Elemento Lab, Analorena Delgadillo, Marisol Méndez, Alicia Moncada Acosta (Glenda Pineda, Eva Ramírez, Cecilia del Carmen Avalos Guillen) from La fundación para la justicia y el estado democrático de derecho.

Israel/Palestine: Parents Circle – Families Forum

Northern Irland: MAC and Paul ‘Donzo’ Donnelly from Dead Centre Tours

Serbia: Meris Mušanović and Ivana Zanić from Humanitarian Law Center

Syria: Zenia Bredmose Henriksen Ab Yonus and Hosam Aldeen Ghathwan

Uganda: Ndugwa Hassan from UMYDF

Ukraine: Embassy of Denmark to Ukraine, Georgia and Armenia, Iryna Polikarchuk from ARTSVIT



Wednesday - Friday: 11am - 7pm h
Saturday and Sunday 10am - 6pm h
Mondays, Tuesdays and holidays closed


Wednesday - Friday: 3pm - 8pm h Saturday and Sunday: 10am - 1pm h Mondays, Tuesdays and holidays closed

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