Raluca Popa


Raluca Popa

“I think of my work as a collection of sentences and short stories.

I often work with existing material. I like to think about a referent such as an image, a written text, a moving picture or personal archive as possessing an implicit documentary quality, bearing a truth beyond its subjective appearance and motivation. Sometimes this primal aspect is far from reach, if I work for example with the title of a book, or an archive of personal school test papers. I work toward acknowledging this aspect, toward clarification. Then, I proceed at reassembling the material in expressive forms to be sent anew into the public sphere. Through various mediums I compare, I turn around, I lurk around, I discard the unnecessary, I make cuts and folds, I reveal, I confess. I complete a cycle. I try to address existing material with care, with precision, in line with ideas of preservation, reparation, recognition, rehabilitation.

As much as I am interested in recognizing and preserving forms, I have been preoccupied more recently with defining for myself what it has to be done, what it is acceptable or not to do, and whether one has to favor models and similarities, or instead one must exercise a certain freedom, one must remain an obstinate foreigner. Therefore, I am once again coming back to early manifestations, to acts of learning and repetition, to forms of replication and comparison, and in emulating simple gestures – for example, the act of learning to swim, as a performance at the Black Sea – I am ultimately bringing into play a feeling of inevitability, a sense of urgency.”


Born in 1979 (RO), lives and works in Berlin (DE)



MA Fine Art, Byam Shaw, Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London (UK)


BA Fine Art, University of Art and Design, Cluj (RO)


Erasmus, University of Castilla–la Mancha, Cuenca (ES)


Solo shows


‘How to Disappear’, Gaep, Bucharest (RO)


‘Iarna pe uliţă’, Sandwich Gallery, Bucharest (RO)

‘The Unknown Portrait of Brancusi’, Europe House, London (UK)


‘Two Titles’, Rumänska Kulturinstitutet, Stockholm (SE)

‘Turning Something Plain into a Circle’, Ivan Gallery, Bucharest (RO)

See more

Group shows


‘The Domino Effect 2’, Gaep, Bucharest (RO)

‘Goodbye, Sarotti’, Teilestrasse 11-13, Berlin (DE)

‘Cadence: Video Poetry Festival 2021’ (with Simona Nastac), Northwest Film Forum, Seattle (US)


‘The Domino Effect’, Gaep, Bucharest (RO)

‘2012 Alphabet Book / Abecedar 2012’, The Last Archive by Vlad Basalici & Tranzit Bucharest (RO)

‘Viral Self-Portraits’ (online exhibition), MG+MSUM, Ljubljana (SI)


‘Polyphonic’, StAnza Scotland’s International Poetry Festival, St. Andrews (UK)

‘Artistic Enquiries into Plants’, Tranzit, Bucharest (RO)

‘Glossary of Distant Narratives’ (in partnership with TIFF #18), Pilot – Fabrica de Pensule/The Paintbrush Factory, Cluj (RO)


‘Truth Lies Not Only in a Dream, But in Many Dreams’, Gaep (formerly EASTWARDS PROSPECTUS), Bucharest (RO)


‘Life A Userʼs Manual’: Art Encounters Biennial, Timișoara (RO)

Sinopale 6, International Sinop Biennial (TU)

‘The Best of Bees’, Duplex, Geneva (CH)


‘Arrangement for a Prize’, installation for ‘The Most Beautiful Books from Romania’ exhibition, National Museum of Contemporary Art, Bucharest (RO)

‘South by Southeast. A Further Surface’, Guangdong Times Museum (CN)

‘Esthetics of Learning’, Printmaking Gallery, The University of the Arts, Philadelphia (USA)


‘Mapping Bucharest: Art, Memory, and Revolution 1916–2016’, Vienna Biennale (AT)

‘Une autre cité’, Tranzit, Bucharest (RO)


‘Dispositions in Time and Space’, National Museum of Contemporary Art, Bucharest (RO)

‘And Yet There Was Art!’, Leopold Museum, Vienna (AT)


‘What We Destroy and Celebrate at the Same Time’, Salonul de Proiecte, Bucharest (RO)

‘O Que Acontece Depois’, Centro Cultural, Cartaxo (PT)


‘As You Desire Me’, Contemporary Art Gallery of Brukenthal National Museum, Sibiu (RO)

‘13 Places’, Concourse Gallery, Archway, London (UK)


Visual concept and animation for Polyphonic (2018), live poetry show produced by the National Museum of Romanian Literature, Bucharest (RO)

Visual development for animation:

The Magic Mountain (2015), dir. Anca Damian, animated documentary feature-length

Crulic, The Path to Beyond (2011), dir. Anca Damian, animated drama feature-length



‘Historia – Hysteria‘, online residency, The Paintbrush Factory & The History Museum, Cluj (RO)


September – artist in residence, quartier21 / MuseumsQuartier, Vienna (AT)


January-June – artist in residence, Embassy of Foreign Artists, Geneva (CH)


July – artist in residence, Residency.ch, PROGR, Bern (CH)

January-April – artist in residence, Villa Straeuli, Winterthur (CH)


Nova Award Commendation, The Lowe+Partners Award for Fresh Creative Talent, Lethaby Gallery, London

Roger & Sarah Bancroft Clark Charitable Trust Award


A Curriculum, A Foundation Artist Residency, Liverpool – short-listed