BMW Art Guide by Independent Collectors

H’art Gallery — Bucharest, Romania

One of Bucharest’s Oldest Private-Run Galleries

Dumitru Gorzo
Dumitru Gorzo

Whilst Romania might still rank first in the European Union in terms of relative poverty, its capital Bucharest is rapidly developing into an influential hub for contemporary art. It's been over twenty-five years since the country came out of its Communist era and the capital city, along with its artists, have morphed through a host of subsequent phases. What we're seeing now is a vibrant, cultural capital that is finally ready for the international attention its now getting.

H’art Gallery opened in 2002, making it one of Bucharest’s first private galleries. The team began working with Romania’s young artists, many of who continued on to become incredibly important for the local contemporary art scene. These days, their roster of artists is smaller, but one thing that they all have in common is the deep passion and dedication to Romanian contemporary art.

Anca Muresan at H’art Gallery, Bucharest
Anca Muresan at H’art Gallery, Bucharest

Founder Dan Popescu started his business because of his friendship with artists, and runs the space together with Ioana Marinescu, who began working for him over ten years ago. Marinescu wanted to study art, but rather than only focus on the theoretical she chose to include the practical study, which is why she first applied for a job at the gallery. She says: “Knowing the artists and the process behind their art is what shaped the curatorial program at H’ art. For me, the artistic biography proved to be the most important thing.”

H’ art’s artists include Gili Mocanu, Suzana Dan, Nicolae Comănescu, Dumitru Gorzo, Anca Mureșan, Ion Bârlădeanu, Ștefan Ungureanu, and Codruța Cernea. All of who have solo shows coming up in the next two years. The gallery also has a strong focus on writing catalogues and is currently working on producing one together with Ion Bârlădeanu’s work. Bârlădeanu is one of Romania’s most known collage makers, and the previously homeless artist has now become celebrated within the industry, with the H’art gallery considering his work a lifetime achievement that deserves to be preserved and published for the larger public to consume.

George Anghelescu
George Anghelescu

Marinescu describes Bucharest as a city “for bohemian connoisseurs”, where “a lot of people traveled or studied around the world, but decided to come back here. And all this influences the art scene.” Over the last decade many more private galleries have opened in Bucharest, which also leads to a more established scene that naturally includes artists and collectors. Marinescu doesn’t necessarily believe that the art is better than it was one or two decades ago, but it’s more visible with a better platform. “I'm optimistic. I want a better life for the artists around me and I do not think that art should be made under extreme poverty”. The international art scene is made up from a global roster of artists; Marinescu avoids a comparison to that and the Romanian one. “The Romanian art scene will gain more influence in the world once the Romanian economy."

by Liv Fleischhacker

Liv Fleischhacker is a freelance writer based in Berlin. Her favorite topics include art, design and food.

All images courtesy H’art Gallery, Bucharest

More Information on H'art Gallery

Galleries (40)

Futura Art Gallery — Pietrasanta, Italy

A gallery that unites established and emerging artists

Gianni Manhattan - Vienna, Austria

Young, International and Critically Astute

Misako & Rosen — Tokyo, Japan

Redefining the Conversation Around Aesthetics

Tiwani Contemporary – London, Great Britain

The London Gallery Promoting African Self-definition

Frutta Gallery — Rome, Italy

Understanding Tradition Without Hesitating to Break It

Contemporary Fine Arts – Berlin, Germany

From West to East and Back Again: a Berlin Institution That’s Made Its Mark

Bo Bjerggaard – Copenhagen, Denmark

Showcasing Figurative Painting With a Side of Communal Spirit

Pierre-Yves Caër Gallery – Paris, France

The Parisian gallery creating a home for Japanese artists in the European art market.

Blindspot Gallery — Hong Kong, China

Throwing a Spotlight on Local Artists

Vane – Newcastle upon Tyne, Great Britain

The Not-for-profit Space Offering Context And Critique In Newcastle

LambdaLambda Lambda – Pristina, Kosovo

Mastering the Language in the Kosovan Capital

Deák Erika Galéria – Budapest, Hungary

Beyond Budapest’s Baths

The Breeder Gallery – Athens, Greece

Breeding New Forms in Athens

Tim Van Laere Gallery – Antwerp, Belgium

An autonomous gallery representing both upcoming and well-established artists

Kraupa-Tuskany Zeidler – Berlin, Germany

One of the most cutting-edge galleries in Berlin

Galerie Fons Welters – Amsterdam, The Netherlands

A Doorway to Amsterdam’s Contemporary Art

Bosse & Baum – London, United Kingdom

Ambitious perspectives in Peckham

TM51 – Oslo, Norway

Three Galleries in One – Oslo’s Most Accessible Space

mfc-michèle didier – Paris, France

A Space that Reflects the Artistic Discipline

V1 Gallery – Copenhagen, Denmark

Challenging the Boundaries of Art

Upstream Gallery – Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Tackling the Shift Between the Analog and Digital in a Post Internet World

Galerie Forsblom – Helsinki, Finland

Bringing international contemporary art to the Finnish capital

The Journal Gallery – New York, USA

Saving New York from Becoming a Sale-Focused Gallery Wasteland

Peres Projects – Berlin, Germany

Bridging the Gap Between Los Angeles and Berlin

Galeria OMR – Mexico City

Mexico City’s advocate for modern artistic tendencies and international contemporary art

LOYAL – Stockholm, Sweden

A Gallery that Pushes the Dialogue Around Young and International Art in Sweden’s Capital

Chimera-Project — Budapest, Hungary

Post-contemporary interest in aesthetics while eagerly re-constructing and defining traditions

La New Gallery — Madrid, Spain

Celebrating contemporary art in all its multi-faceted forms

Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery – Sydney, Australia

Her uncanny ability to recognize unique Pacific Rim talent

Take Ninagawa Gallery – Tokyo, Japan

Promoting emerging Japanese artists within a cross-generational, international framework

RaebervonStenglin – Zurich, Switzerland

It is much more about concepts, long conversations and long-term commitment

Galerie Emanuel Layr – Vienna, Austria

Finding the right chord among the various artists

Platform China – Beijing/Hongkong, China

This shows how much prejudgment there still is

Fluxia – Milan, Italy

Strive to discover new approaches in contemporary art

Gaudel de Stampa – Paris, France

“Discreet” seems to be the perfect adjective

NON – Istanbul, Turkey

The dawn of an era of collaboration

Vermelho – São Paulo, Brazil

There were no galleries open to a new generation of artists working in a nontraditional way

Eleven Rivington – New York, USA

Newfound talent and rediscovers international artists for a new audience

Ibid. – London, Great Britain

Rather than listing names