Ivan Grubanov

Ivan Grubanov was born on 9th March 1976 in Belgrade. His graduation from the Painting department at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade was followed by a two-year specialization at Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten in Amsterdam, and a one-year programme at Delfina Studios in London. Shortly after he received a scholarship of Casa de Velazquez, a French institute in Madrid and was a guest lecturer at Hochschüle für bildende kunst in Braunschweig. He earned his PhD in Arts at the University of Leuven in Belgium.


The focal point of Grubanov’s art is a thematic body of work dedicated to the notion of nation. In the production of his paintings, the artist uses the well-established practice of selecting national entities whose symbols include characteristic national slogans, which are embroidered on the canvas surface. In the following stages of applying the layers of paint, petrol, and smoke, they are being covered, concealed and transformed into alternative definitions and messages through provocative visual and aesthetic presentations, posing engaged questions about cohesive properties of today’s nations, their correspondence with current social reality, possible developments of the notion of nation and the future influence of emblems.

The artist’s recent work is part of continual project of long-term researching and interpreting ideological, political, and cultural aspects of the notion of nation in which he uses painting as a method of acquiring knowledge.

Born in Belgrade, 9th of March 1976


2016 University of Leuven/LUCA School of Arts, PhD in Arts, Leuven, BE

2008 Casa de Velazquez, Madrid, ES

2005-2006 Delfina Foundation Studio Programme, London, UK

2002-2003 Rijksakademie van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam, NL

1996-2001 Academy of Fine Arts, University of Arts, Master of Fine Arts, Belgrade, YU

1991-1995 Grammar School Uros Predic, Pancevo, YU


Selected Solo Exhibitions

2018  Art Brussels (with Ron Mandos gallery), Counterpicturing, Brussels, BE

2017  Gallery of the Belgrade Cultural Center, Painting the Nation, Belgrade, RS

2017  Exhibition Hall of the Central University Library Leuven, The Summer of Nationalism, Leuven, BE

2016  Funnel Contemporary, Collective Fractures, Bucharest, RO

2016  Ron Mandos Gallery, Smoke Nation Screen, Amsterdam, NL

2015  Serbian Pavilion at La Biennale di Venezia, the 56th International Art Exhibition, United Dead Nations, Venice, IT

2015  Loock Galerie, Behind the Smokescreen, Berlin, DE

2015  Vienna Contemporary, solo at the Loock galerie booth

2013  Loock Galerie, Dead Flags, Berlin, DE,

2012  National Museum of Contemporary Art, Current Pasts (with Vangelis Vlahos), Athens, GR

2012  Loock Galerie, Smokescreens, Berlin, DE

2010  MARZ Galeria, Haunting Memory (associated project of the Architecture Trienale), Lisbon, PT

2010  Loock Galerie, Seven Studies for a Memorial, Berlin, DE

2009  Center for Cultural Decontamination (solo presentation within the 50th October Salon), Belgrade, RS

2008  Loock Galerie, The Evil Painter, Berlin, DE

2008  Laboratorio 987, MUSAC – Museo de arte contemporaneo de Castilla y Leon, (with Angel Rubia), Leon, ES

2007  Le Grand Cafe Centre d’Art Contemporain, Non-Institutional, St Nazaire, FR

2007  Gallery of the Cultural Center of Belgrade, RS

2006  Nogueras Blanchard Gallery, Barcelona, ES

2005  Stroom Contemporary Art Center, Den Haag, NL

2005  Museum of Contemporary Art, Belgrade, SCG. Visitor

2004  Ron Mandos Gallery, Study of My Father, a Relation to the Origin, Rotterdam, NL

2004  Lawrence O’Hana Gallery, London, UK

2004  Expodium, Cages, Utrecht, NL

2001  Gallery of Contemporary Art, Pancevo, YU

1999  Zlatno Oko Center for Visual Culture, Novi Sad, YU


Selected Group Exhibitions


Athens City Arts Center, Materiality of the Painterly Event, Athens. GR

Museum Palais Populaire, The World on Paper, Berlin, DE

Serbian Cultural Center in Paris, Color Lucida, Paris, FR



Pancevo Gallery of Contemporary Art, New Aquisitions, Pancevo, RS

China Art Museum, Voyage – A Journey Through Serbian Contemporary Art, Sanghai, CH

Aa 29 Project Room, Four Directios, Caserta, IT

Residency of the Swiss Ambasador, Staying Here With You, a performance with Katia Schenker, Belgrade, RS

Museo del Duomo, Limiti – Confini, Milan, IT

Royal Atheneum Antwerp, I travelled the World on Seven Seas, Anwerp, BE



Salon Dahlmann, Ach, die sind ja heute so unpolitisch, Berlin, DE

17th Pancevo Biennial, SEE Art Gates – Stanja stvarnosti, Pancevo, RS

Art Brussels, with Ron Mandos gallery

Art Rotterdam, with Ron Mandos gallery



Serbian Cultural Center in Paris, Constellation, Paris, FR

Outside Gallery Apolo, Study for a Memorial, Pancevo, RS

Gallery of the Cultural Center of Belgrade, BONTON: Dobro odrzavanje i lepo ponasanje, Belgrade, RS

Naval Heritage Collection, Porto Montenegro, New Horizons, Tivat, ME



16th Pancevo Biennial, Pancevo, RS

MUSAC (Museo de arte contemporaneo de Castilla y Leon), Diez años después, Leon, ES

Cultural Center of Cyprus in Athens, In bocca al lupo, crepi crepi, Athens, GR

Clovic Castle Gallery, Road to Europe / I want to Speak About the War, Zagreb, HR

STUK Kunstencentrum, Enacting Protest?, Leuven, BE

Stroom Center for Contemporary Art, The Good Cause, The Hague, NL

Francois Ghebaly Gallery, Squares, Los Angeles, USA

Loock Galerie, Celebrities, Berlin, DE



267 Quartiere für Zeitgenossische Kunst & Fotografie, Der Geist in Vakuum, Braunschweig, DE

Universiteitsbibliotheek KU Leuven, The Prelude Pathetique, Leuven, BE

Ostrale ‘013, Wir überschreiten den Rubikon, Dresden, DE

9th Inspiracje Festival, Genesis, Szczecin, PL

Lanchester Gallery Projects, We Are Everything to Each Other, Coventry, UK

Remont Gallery, Preslisavanje 10, Belgrade, RS



Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art, Reality Bites, Helsinki, FI

Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art, A Gathering, Thessaloniki, GR

Green Art Gallery, Referencing History, Dubai, UAE

Good Children Gallery, That Passes Between Us, New Orleans, US

Loock Galerie, Private View, Berlin, DE



Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Algiers , The 3rd International Festival of Contemporary Art of Algiers (FIAC), Algiers, DZ

MOCAK, Museum of Contemporary Art Krakow, History in Art, Krakow, PL

Kunstforum Ostdeutsche Galerie, Donumenta, Regensburg, DE

Apex Art, Walls That Divide Us, New York, US

Blainsouthern, Selektionseffekte, Berlin, DE

MARZ Galeria, Thin Air, Lisbon, PT



Extra City- Kunsthal Antwerpen, Drawing Documents, Antwerp, BE

National Museum of Contemporary Art, Politics of Art, Athens, GR

Museu Colecção Berardo, All That Is Solid Melts Into Air, Lisbon, PT

Witte de With, Morality, Act 3, And the Moral of the Story is, Rotterdam, NL

Apex Art, Morality, Act 3, And the Moral of the Story is, New York, US



2nd Spa Port Biennial, Where Everything is Yet to Happen, Banja Luka, BH

28th Biennial of Graphic Arts, The Matrix: An Unstable Reality, Ljubljana, SLO

City Gallery, Monument to Transformation, Prague, CZ

Arts center Vooruit, Courtisane Festival, Gent, BE

Casa de Velazquez, Los Puertas Abiertas, Madrid, ES

ARCO, Solo Projects, Madrid, ES



3rd Bucharest Biennial of Young Artists, Bucharest, RO

1st Spa Port Biennial, Banja Luka, BH

Kunsthalle Bern, No Leftovers, CH

Blackwood Gallery, Signals in the Dark, Mississauga, CA

Henie Onstad Art Center, Headlines & Footnotes, Oslo, NO

ARCOS, Contemporary Art Museum Sannio, Italy Italien, Wlochy, Benevento, IT

Iaspis, Between the Images, Stockholm, SE

Hattyuhaz Galeria, Wasteland, Pecs, HU

Institute for Contemporary Art and Thought, Selective Knowledge, Athens, GR



10th Istanbul Biennial, Istanbul, TR

1st Thessaloniki Biennial, Thessaloniki, Greece

Stedelijk Museum CS, Drawing Typologies, Amsterdam, NL

Forum Stadpark, Ground Lost, Graz, AT

Office Baroque, Alabama, Antwerp, BE

SMART Project Space, Every Wind That Blows, Amsterdam, NL

Aeroplastics Gallery, Speakers, Brussels, BE



12th Pancevo Biennial, Pancevo, RS

Le Grand Café Centre d’Art Contemporain, Histoires, St Nazaire, FR

Drawing Center, New York, ‘Common Destinations’ (curated by Katherine Carl)

South London Gallery, Around the World in 80 Days, London, UK

Blackwood Gallery, Everyday Every Other Day, Mississauga, CA

Moderna Galerija, Interrupted Histories, Ljubljana, SLO

Kunsthalle Bern, Vila Jelmini, Bern, CH

Apex Art, Sweet Taboos, New York, USA

PSWAR, Pixels of Reality, Amsterdam, NL

Gallery of the Cultural Center of Belgrade, Affinity by Choice, Belgrade, SCG



2nd Tirana Bienale, Sweet Taboos, Tirana, AL

3rd Biennial of Quebec, Manif d’Art, Quebec, CA

Extra City-Kunsthal Antwerpen, Information/Transformation, Antwerp, BE

Kunsthalle Bern, Off-Key, Bern, CH

Press to Exit project Space, 20/21, Skopje, MK

Zvono Gallery, 20/21, Belgrade, SCG

Espace Culturel Francois Mitterand, Values, Perigueux, FR



Yugoslav Biennial of Young Artists, Untitled as Yet, Vrsac, SCG

11th Pancevo Biennial, Pancevo, SCG

De Appel, The World is Fine, We Ourselves Unfortunately Somewhat Less, Amsterdam, NL

Freiraum, Museumsquartier, Coded Cultures, Vienna, AT

Museum Beelden aan Zee, Video Studio, Scheveningen, NL

ART Rotterdam, Smart Project Space stand, Rotterdam, NL



Museum De Beyerd, Breda, NL, ‘Martha Colburn, Ivan Grubanov, Bas Louter, Serge Onen-Fuse’

Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, NL, ‘Open Ateliers’

Gallery of Contemporary Art, Pancevo, SCG, ‘Regional-Universal’



Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, NL, ‘Open Ateliers’

US Art Gallery, Stellenbosch, SA, ‘Violence-Silence’

Chinese-European Art Center, Xiamen, CN, ‘Rendezvous in Xiamen’

Goethe Institute, Tel Aviv, IL, ‘Violence – Memory’

N.S.A. Gallery, Durban, SA, ‘Violence’

Nieubethesda, Great Karoo, SA, ‘Silence’

Outline & Kunstruimte NP40, Amsterdam, NL, ‘Fake or Real’

Gallery of the Cultural Center of Belgrade, Belgrade, YU, International Workshop ‘Glass’

Josip Bepo Benkovic Gallery, Herceg Novi, YU, ’35. Winter Salon’

Publikum’s Calendar of New Art and Contemporary Life, Belgrade, YU



15th International Triennial of Drawing, The Modern Gallery, Rijeka, CRO

Museum of Voevodina, Novi Sad, YU, ‘Resistances and Confrontations’

Center for Contemporary Art Ujazdowsky, Warsaw, PL, ‘Under Construction’

Gallery of Contemporary Art, Pancevo, YU, ‘Resistances and Confrontations’

Gallery of Contemporary Art, Pancevo, YU, ’31. Salon of Pancevo’

Cinema Apolo, Pancevo, YU, ‘Open Sensuality’

Barutana, Belgrade, YU, ’11th BELEF’

Gallery of Contemporary Art, Pancevo, YU, ‘Glass’



Zacheta Gallery, Warsaw, PL, ‘Inside-Outside’

Rex, Belgrade, YU, ‘Short Electronic Form Fair’

Apolo Cinema, Pancevo, YU, ‘Open Sensuality’

Dvoriste Gallery of Contemporary Art, Pancevo,YU, ’30. October Salon’

Cinema Apolo, Pancevo, YU, ‘International Biennial of Sculpture’

Graphic Colective Gallery, Belgrade, YU, ‘Not a Day Without a Line’


Awards and Grants

2012-2013 Scholarship of the Ministry of Culture of Lower Saxony for Artistic Research, Hannover, DE

2008  Scholarship Casa de Velazquez, French Institute in Madrid, ES

2005-2006   Delfina Foundation, Delfina Studio Trust Award, London, UK

2003  RABK, Scholarship of the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, Amsterdam, NL

2002  RABK, Scholarship of the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, Amsterdam, NL

2001  Pancevo, YU, Award of 31st  Salon of Pancevo

2000  Pancevo, YU, Award of 30th  October Salon

1999  World’s Health Organization, Belgrade, YU, Award for Best Poster

1997  Patagonija Magazine, Vrsac, YU, Award for Best Drawing


Film/Video Screening

2004  Muffathalle, Munich, DE, ‘NEURO’

2004  VPRO Television, NL, Smart Project Space selection

2001  FLUX 01, Rex Cultural Center, Belgrade, YU

2001  Academy of Fine Arts Gallery, Sarajevo, BH, ARTme

2001  Student’s Cultural Center-SKC, Belgrade, YU, ‘Mikrokino Fest’

2000  Culture House Gorizia, Gorizia, IT, ‘VideoGong Festival’

2000  Kapelica Gallery, Ljubljana, SI, ‘hEXPO’


Installations in Public Space

2006  Installation and performance in front of the National Parliament in Belgrade (curated by Eric Corne, organized by the Cultural Center of Belgrade)

2001  Installation in public space, 10th BELEF, Belgrade, RS

1997-1999 Series of installations in public space, ‘BREAK 21-International Festival of Young Independent Artists’, Ljubljana, SLO (curated by Dunja Kukovec)


Selected Bibliography


Unnation, Kehrer Verlag, Heidelberg-Berlin, as author, 2016

United Dead Nations, Museum of Contemporary Art Belgrade, texts by Lidija Merenik, Ana Bogdanovic, Peter Vermeersch, 2015

The Evil Painter, Verlag Fuer Moderne Kunst Nuernberg, texts by Charles Esche, Philippe Pirotte, Ivan Grubanov, 2008

Documents Grubanov, Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten, Amsterdam, editor Martijntje Hallman, text by Ivan Grubanov, 2006

Visitor, Museum of Contemporary Art Belgrade/Kunsthalle Bern, texts by Gerardo Mosquera, Marina Martic, Philippe Pirotte, Ivan Grubanov, 2005


Selected Exhibition Catalogues and Reference Publications

Annelote Verhagen, Ivan Grubanov, Video Studio, Museum Beelden an Zee, Scheveningen 2004

James Becket. Ivan Grubanov, Born Belgrade, 1976, Untitled as Yet Catalogue, Vrsac, 2004

Wim van der Beek, Ivan Grubanov – Galerie Ron Mandos, Kunstbeeld 09, Amsterdam 2004

Ana Peraica, Media on Trial, Springerin 04, Vienna, 2004

Goran Petrovic, 20/21 Catalogue, Belgrade 2005

Luk Lambrecht, Information/Transformation, Metropolis, No 6, Antwerp, 2005

Ana Peraica, Grubanov for president!, Off-Key Catalogue, Kunsthalle Bern, 2005

Arno van Roosmalen, Ivan Grubanov at Stroom Den Haag, Stroom Den Haag, 2005

Gregor Guy Smith, May I See the Original?, Ivan Grubanov at Stroom Den Haag, Stroom Den Haag, 2005

Kai van Hasselt, On the Work Visitor, Ivan Grubanov at Stroom Den Haag, Stroom Den Haag, 2005

Arjan Reinders, Ivan Grubanov – Stroom, Kunstbeeld, Amsterdam, 2005

Zoë Gray, Ivan Grubanov, Contemporary Magazine Annual Issue, London, February 2006

Anne Dekerk, Ivan Grubanov –  Mapping Myself Into Complex Social Situations, Etcetera Magazine No 101, Brussels 2006

Tony White, Another Fool in the Balkans, Cadogan, London, 2005

Zoe Gray, Father Land, Mother Tongue, Wasafiri Magazine, No 48, London, 2006

Rebecca Gordon Nesbit, Tirany and Tribalism, the Art of Ivan Grubanov, Afterall 14, London-Los Angeles, 2006

Philippe Pirotte, Ivan Grubanov-Close Encounters, Afterall No 14, London-Los Angeles, 2006

Kit Hammond, Ivan Grubanov, Around the World in 80 Days Catalogue, ICA London & South London Gallery, London 2006

Katherine Carl, Ivan Grubanov, Drawing Papers, The Drawing Center New York, New York, Autumn 2006

Alex Mitrani, Ivan Grubanov, Papers d’art, Girona, Spain, 2nd semester 2006

Csiszek Petra, Wasteland, Balkon, Budapest, 2008

Seamus Keally, Considering Two Works by Ivan Grubanov and Paul Chan, Monochrom #26-34, Vienna, 2010

Raluca Voinea, Ivan Grubanov: I am not merely an Observer, Idea Magazine for Art and Society, #40, Bucharest, 2012

Daphne Vitali, Between Past and Present: Ivan Grubanov and Vangelis Vlahos, Artpulse Magazine No. 15 Vol. 4, 2013


Selected Articles and Reviews

Machteld Leij, Drama van Servie, NRC Handelsblad, Amsterdam, 08 10 2004

Paul Alexander, Stiekem Milosevic tekenen, NRC Handelsblad, Amsterdam, 24 09 2005

Nicole Lucas, Tekenar Ivan Grubanov, Trouw, Amsterdam, 16 12 2005

Edwin van Baarle, Interview with Ivan Grubanov, AD, Amsterdam, 22 12 2005

Jan Goossensen, Onverteerde restjes, UIT, Amsterdam, 01 2006

Edo Dijksterhuis, Exorcisme in een rafelig schetsblok, Het Financiele Dagblad, Amsterdam, 14 01 2006

Rutger Pontzen, Krachtige zoektocht naar Milosevic, Volkskrant, Amsterdam 04 01 2006

Marija Djordjevic, Tajni crtezi, Politika, Belgrade, 09 09 2005

Ljiljana Cinkul, Vizuelno svedocenje, Politika, Belgrade, 20 09 2005

Slobodan Kostic, Vizuelni Stenogram, Vreme, Belgrade, 15 09 2005

Noèlia Hernández, Ídolos caídos, Culturas, La Vanguardia, Barcelona, 25 10 2006

Arnau Puig, Un arte desde los Añicos, ABC, Nº768, Barcelona, 21 10 2006

Neus Miró, Ivan Grubanov, Exit Express, Nº22, Barcelona, 10 2006

Conxita Oliver, Afterimages, Ivan Grubanov, AVUI, Barcelona, 11 2006

David G. Torres, Ivan Grubanov, El Mundo, Madrid, 16 11 2006

Marjanovic, Intervju, Ivan Grubanov, Blic, Beograd, 09 04 2007

Cristina Fanjul, El Musac Representa las huellas del conflicto de la antiqua Yugoslavia, Diario De Leon, Leon, 14 03 2008

Kelly Kiki, Ivan Grubanov, BH Magazine Athens, 25 01 2011

Giorgos Karoszak, Politics of Art, Eleutherotypia, Athens, 22 01 2011

Marija Djordjevic, Arheologija Konflikta, Politika, Beograd, 02 03 2011