About me

Since I can remember, nothing has ever captivated me more than nature.

I’d feel a profound sense of camaraderie, thankfulness, and vitality in nature. I spent a lot of time as a child exploring the outdoors and being around animals. I also enjoyed climbing trees and dangling from the highest branches of an old cherry tree that grew in my backyard.

I grew up in Varazdin, a little town with lots of greenery. When I was a little child, my father used to take me for nature walks in Varazdin and along the banks of the Drava River. I continued to spend the most of my free time outdoors  as I got older and grew more in love with horses. My urge to spend time in nature grew every day.

At the age of 18, I relocated to Zagreb to enroll in the Academy of Fine Arts. I didn’t like living in such a big city, but after adopting a dog named Tara, I started going on hikes and exploring the nearby countryside, notably Medvednica. When I first went to Velebit in 2004, I developed a strong love for the enigmatic mountain, which later became a never-ending source of inspiration for my paintings. After enrolling in an alpinist school, I began practicing alpinism in 2005. In 2007, I participated in the First Croatian Women’s Alpinist Expedition on Cho Oy, an 8,201-meter-high Himalayan mountain. This significant life challenge stripped me completely, displaying not just the immense power and splendor of nature, but also my own strength, which is primarily a strength of spirit. Because staying alive in such hostile circumstances requires strong willpower and mental organization. I got there with the help of my heart, and I got to safety with the help of my spirit.

My paintings now center on examining my inner power and spirituality as well as how nature affects me. I try to convey to the viewer in my paintings my relationship to and experience of nature, as well as how it elevates and fortifies me.

In 2006, after earning my diploma from the Zagreb School of Fine Arts, I began my career in the arts. I put painting on hold as I turned my attention to graphic design in preparation for the upcoming crisis. Next came getting married and starting a family. I had three wonderful children and completely gave myself over to motherhood, putting painting on the wayside. I’ve always understood that painting is what I’m meant to do, and I became more and more unhappy and uncomplete as my life lacked creativity.

I decided to return after almost ten years, when the kids were grown. I realized that suppressing my creative energy harmed both me and those around me and that I need to paint almost as much as I need to eat and drink.I work quickly and fluidly, frequently creating several works of art at once. My inspiration comes from the nature, its alterations, as well as the development of my soul. Through my paintings, I explore the ways that nature and works of art have an impact on the spectator in various spheres of our existence. How far we can go inside ourselves by spending time in nature and contemplating a piece of art. The language of the soul, art invites the observer to re-connect with oneself. In a similar way, nature awakens us, taps into our basic core, and brings out our best selves. I wish to spread the idea that the blending of art and nature is good for human wellbeing on a worldwide scale.

Solo exhibitions:


  • September 2023. “Vision of the sky” Exhibition on the occasion of the 15th anniversary of the First Croatian Women’s Alpinist Expedition on Cho Oy 8201m, Kupola Gallery, Zagreb


  • May 2023. Forest Reflections, Special Police Gallery, Zagreb
  • May 2023. Trees, Galerija Usput, CMR, Zagreb
  • 2023. My colors of the Himalayas, Vladimir Nazor Gallery, Zagreb
  • 2023. About green, Gallery Oblok, Zagreb
  • 2022: Sketches from the Himalayas, Brela, Croatia, Exhibition on the occasion of the 15th anniversary of the First Croatian Women’s Alpine Expedition to Cho Oyu
  • 2020. Zagreb, Contrast Gallery, “ Olive trees and people”, Croatia
  • 2018. Zagreb, European House Zagreb, exhibition of paintings and drawings ‘’Gojanovic – Krupa – Martinovic’’, Croatia
  • 2012. Zagreb, MORH Zvonimir Gallery, ‘I Touch the Sky’, in collaboration with Irena Gayatri Horvat, Croatia
  • 2012. Zabok, Green room gallery, ‘‘ Make me a famous artist! ’’, Croatia
  • 2009. Hvar, Stari Grad, Old Town Museum, ‘‘ Hvar ’’, Croatia
  • 2008. Zagreb, Dome Gallery, ‘‘ Road, Passage, Threshold ’’, Croatia
  • 2007. Varazdin, Larus Gallery, ‘‘ My Himalayan Experiences ’’, Croatia
  • 2007. Selce, Terme Selce Gallery, “My colors of the bora”, Croatia
  • 2006. Risnjak National Park Administration, “Trees give birth to the forest”, Croatia
  • 2005. Zagreb, Student Center Gallery, ‘‘ Self-Portraits ’’, Croatia
  • 1997. Varaždin, ‘Sunflower Gallery’ Gallery, Croatia
  • 1994. Varaždin, ‘Youth Forum Galleries’, Croatia

Online solo exhibitions:

  • 2021. / 2022. Portal ” Wilderness time – records from nature” – https://vrijemedivljine.wordpress.com/

    Explanation: in the project within the Digital Adaptation Program 2021/2022, through the project “Wilderness Time – Nature Records” organized by HDLU Zagreb, which was financially supported by the Ministry of Culture and of the Croatian Media, Jelena Martinović is fully presented in virtual galleries with her paintings, drawings, photographs and videos, which can be seen at the following links:
  1. Jelena Martinovic: Videos from nature, February 19, 2022.
  2. Jelena Martinovic: Painted poetry, January 29, 2022.
  3. Jelena Martinovic :Mountaineering Diary through Painting and Drawing, virtual exhibition, January 10, 2022.
  4. Jelena Martinovic: Photographs from Nature, virtual exhibition, December 2022
  5. Women in Phases, Port-art-women, https://www.portartwomen.com/?page_id=2244

Group Exhibitions

  • 2023 Cult of Ugliness, exhibition as part of the thematic project “Cult of Ugliness” by curator Andrej Zbašnik as part of the program of the HDLU of Istria for the year 2023, Gallery of the HDLU of Istria, Pula, Croatia
  • 2023. Red, exhibition as part of the thematic project of HDLU Istria called “Red”, Gallery HDLU Istria, Pula, Croatia
  • 2023. Mystery of the Cross, exhibition space/crypt of the monastery-parish church B.D. Marije Anđeoska, Sesvetksa Sopnica, Zagreb
  • 2023 Istrian Requiem, Gallery HDLU Istria, Pula, Croatia
  • 2023. They Are There, Museum of the City of Vinkovci, Vinkovci, Croatia
  • 2022. “Božić – the second name of the family”, a group exhibition of HULULK members, Blue and Green Sesvete Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2022. First Zagreb Black Friday Art Walk, Gallery of Special Police,  Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2022.- “Parallel world” – Exhibition as part of the author’s project “Artist’s print”, Ana Marinović, graduate graphic artist, in cooperation with the “Association for the development of fine arts, innovative singer-songwriters and literary promotion”, Gallery “Association for the development of fine arts” , innovative singer-songwriters and literary promotion” Zetska 2, Belgrade, Serbia
  • 2022 – “Line 2022” – an author’s project by Ana Marinović, graduate graphic artist, realized within the framework of the Creative Factory Association, Toulouse Lotrek Gallery, Belgrade, Serbia
  • 2022. “18. INTERBIFP, International Bienal Festival of Portrait, Tuzla, Bosnia and Hercegovina
  • 2022. 5 Boutique Art Fair Nesvrstani, Lauba Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2022. “3nd Zagreb Drawing Festival”, InArt Gallery, Trnsko Municipality; Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2021. “Christmas is for me”, a group exhibition of HULULK members, Blue and Green Sesvete Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2021. . “3nd Zagreb Drawing Festival”, InArt Gallery, Trnsko Municipality; Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2020. “Animalism in Photography, Drawing and Painting”, group exhibition of members and friends of Croatian Artist Association Zagreb in the Gallery of the Faculty of Economics and Small Gallery of the Faculty of Economics in Ljubljana, Slovenia – (group jury, conceptual exhibition)
  • 2020. “2nd Zagreb Drawing Festival”, InArt Gallery, Trnsko Municipality; Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2018. ‘‘ Zagreb Summer Art Salon 2018 – Touch of Nature ’’ at the Dubrava Cultural Center, Zagreb – (group jury, concept exhibition), Croatia
  • 2018. ‘‘ New Perspectives 2018 – Exhibition on the Occasion of 150 Years of Croatian Societies of Fine Artists ’’, European House Zagreb, Zagreb – (group jury, conceptual exhibition), Croatia
  • 2017. ” Zagreb Summer Art Salon – Imaginary Spaces ”, Croatian Artist Association Zagreb, Vladimir Filakovac Gallery, Zagreb – (group jury, concept exhibition), Croatia
  • 2016. “Zagreb Art Salon 2016”, Croatian Artist Association Zagreb, European House Zagreb, Zagreb – (group jury, concept exhibition), Croatia

Earlier group exhibitions

  • 2013. Lecture and group exhibition on the occasion of the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Gallery of the Academy of Fine Arts in Moscow, Moscow, Russia
  • 2012. 31st Youth Salon, Croatian Artist Association, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2011 – 2017. Annual exhibitions of Croatian Artist Association members, Prsten Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2010. 30th Youth Salon, Likum Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2010. 45th Zagreb Salon, Croatian Artist Association, Zagreb, Croatia2010. ‘Minimum Maximum 2 religion’, exhibition of miniatures, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Conceptual group exhibitions:

  • 2010. Exhibition of works by the art workshop Karlik Evi, Cappadocia, Turkey
  • 2009. Slovenia Open to Art, ‘‘ Other Nature ’’, Lična hiža Gallery, Ajdovščina, Slovenia, curator Anamarija Štibl Šajn2009
  • 2009. “Image as a Hermetic Icon of the New Age”, “Arrival in Heritage”, Abonos Gallery, Orašje, Bosnia and Hercegovina, curator Vladimir Gudac
  • 2008. – “Island as Utopia”, project “Arrival in Heritage”, Gallery of the Scientific Library, Zadar, curator Nikola Albaneže, Croatia
  • 2008. Exhibition of the collection “Mother”, Franciscan Monastery Humac, Bosnia and Hercegovina
  • 2006. ‘Below Level 6’, Zagreb, Croatia
  • 2005. ‘ART forum Zadar’, Gallery of the State Archives, Zadar, Croatia
  • 2004. ‘Passion Heritage’, Zagreb

Workshops and symposium:

  • 2022.
  • Dubrava Art Colony 2022, as part of the Artupuncture in Dubrava event, Kontrast Gallery, Zagreb
  • 2021. Green bridge, Ribnica, Slovenia
  • 2013. guest lecturer at “Art, Nature and Sports” and participant in a group exhibition at the Moscow Academy of Arts on the occasion of the Olympics in Moscow, Russia
  • 2010. – a series of workshops “Kleine Mahlerei” with children throughout Croatia, on the topic of Gustav Mahelr; in collaboration with the Austrian Cultural Forum
  • 2010. – “International Art Camp, Cappadocia, Turkey
  • 2009. – Symposium of the Academy of Arts and the Academy of Sciences in Moscow, lecture “Art, Nature and Sports”, Lyceum of the Moscow Academy of Arts, Moscow, Russia
  • 2009. – Slovenia Open to Art, Second Nature, Sinji vrh, Slovenia
  • 2009. – “Painting, Hermetic Icon of the New Age”, “Arrival in Heritage”, Zadar, Croatia
  • 2008. – ‘As tide’, ‘‘ Heimat ’’, Pistoletto Foundation, Graz, Austria2008. – “Island as Utopia”, “Arrival in Heritage”, Zadar, Croatia
  • 2005. – art colony “Colors of the King”, Velebit, Croatia
  • 2005. – art colony “CreArt”, Lisca, Slovenia
  • 2004. – art colony “Island”, Solta, Croatia

Representation in the permanent premises of museums, modern galleries and public collections in the country and abroad:

  • Collection of the University of Zadar
  • Collection “Mother” of the Franciscan Monastery, Humac, Bosnia and Hercegovina
  • Collection of the Academy of Fine Arts in Moscow, Russia

Welcome to the website filled with colour, energy and nature.

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