Eva Grubinger

Eva Grubinger is an internationally recognized sculptor and installation artist. Between 1989–95 Grubinger studied at the Hochschule der Künste Berlin. While Grubinger began her career with works that reflected and commented, in a pioneering manner, on the early development of the Internet, since the mid-1990s she has worked primarily in sculpture and installation. These phases are not, however, disconnected: her latter-day focus on materiality and space, not least social space and how it subliminally affects us, might be seen as a reaction to the immateriality of the online world.

Grubinger’s method is primarily to focus on, and unsettle via various strategies, recognizable objects. Her scope in this regard is wide: she draws inspiration and iconography from such diverse worlds as seafaring, history, architecture, the theatre of politics, and the recent history of art itself, particularly Minimalism and Conceptualism. As a sculptor she has worked, accordingly, in numerous different formats and materials. Typically, however, Grubinger’s approach is to take subjects that we might be familiar with, even to the point of no longer ‘seeing’ them, and alter their scale, context and material, often with attention to surfaces – for surfaces, and their deceptions, are a strong part of her interest – so that they register anew. As she works, the familiar comes to reveal not only itself but also its subtle, often politicised workings on body and mind.

In the 1990s and 2000s Grubinger had numerous residencies in Cologne, Stockholm, Paris, London, New York and Los Angeles. From 2008 -2015 she has been professor for Sculpture – Transmedial Space at Kunstuniversität Linz, Austria. 2016 she acted as deputy professor for sculpture at Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. She lives in Berlin and Salzburg.

Throughout the past twenty years Grubinger’s works have been shown in numerous international venues, with solo exhibitions at, among others, Museum Abteiberg Mönchengladbach; Kiasma Museum, Helsinki; Berlinische Galerie, Berlin; Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt; the Museum Belvedere, Vienna; and the Institute of Contemporary Art in London. She has also participated in many group exhibitions in Germany and abroad, e.g. the Deichtorhallen, Hamburg; the Taipei Fine Art Museum; Krannert Art Museum, Illinois; the Marrakech Biennale; and Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam.

Hedgehog, 2014/15 Installation view Igel, Salzkammergut
Black Diamond Bay, 2015 Installation view Institute of Contemporary Arts, London
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  1. […] Eva Grubinger is a sculptor who works with everyday objects, altering and rescaling them to attract notice. Seafaring has played a large role in her work, the juxtaposition of the desire to seek adventure and to seek safety. This contradiction informs her sculptures. Recently, light has begun to factor into her work. Grubinger uses quinine to create fluorescence in her sculptures. In one piece, Schnapps bottles containing scorpions fluoresce because the scorpions themselves contain a natural quinine which glows under blacklight. One of Grubinger’s works, known as Hedgehog rests high up in the Austrian Alps in an area where fascists took up residence during World War II. In order to break down the difficult history of the area, Grubinger and others created a public space where Hedgehog now resides. […]