Croatian Artist Showcased In Notable International Success


"Just Breathe" by Branka Grubic

“Just Breathe”
by Branka Grubic

Croatian artist Branka Grubic has just won the Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery (United States based) international competition in “All Women Art Exhibition” with her work “Just Breathe”, beating 890 entries from 33 countries from around the world.
In fact, in January, 2016. Branka received two awards for her work.
Painting “Just Breathe” won 1st Place in Painting Category, and 1st Place in Overall Category on 5th Annual “Woman Art Exhibition” in Florida, USA.


Reacting to her win Branka Grubic said: "I'm as happy as pig in mud!" Photo: Screenshot

Reacting to her win
Branka Grubic said:
“I’m as happy as pig in mud!”
Photo: Screenshot

Branka is a self-taught artist from Croatia’s beautiful and historic coastal town of Sibenik.

Old Town Sibenik Croatia

Old Town Sibenik Croatia

From her website “” we learn that Branka Grubic grew up in Sibenik, Croatia in the 1980’s. Her painting began as a teenager, but her career did not really begin until her early-30s. Branka’s paintings are contemporary and have a universal appeal to men and women of all cultures. The work consists of layers of paint and imagery that exude to energy and life. The viewer is drawn into a world filled with movement, a signature style illustrating Branka’s ability to juxtapose abstract mixed media with the feminine figure.

Charity is also a high priority for artist Branka Grubic. She donated her art to several charitable events and causes.
Continuous positive reception of Branka’s work is also evident in corporate settings with many leading organisations. Critics have said, “Similar to her pop art predecessors, Branka’s brightly colored abstracts and photo-paintings do not demand anything from us. They reflect ourselves back to us. They allow us to fill in the blanks with our own stories. Perhaps it is this lack of an agenda that appeals to such a giant segment of the population.”

Branka Grubic Croatian TV news Screenshot: HRT TV 9 January 2016

Branka Grubic
Croatian TV news
Screenshot: HRT TV 9 January 2016

Her success with winning the awards this month means that her work will now be featured on the Light Space & Time website for the month of January 2016 and thereafter, her artworks and link to her website will remain online in the Light Space & Time Archives.

Branka Grubic at work Photo:

Branka Grubic at work

In an interview Branka gave for the Sibenik In publication in Febnruary 2015, even though her career in painting didn’t begin until her 30’s the beginnings of her art creativity are rooted in her childhood and, as she said, she has “been drawing always. The first thing I remember is a drawing I did in second grade of Primary school, when I adored Charlie Chaplin. I took the ink and drew his head, his eyes, his little mustaches, his hat, one could recognise it was him in the drawing.” After Chaplin she moved on to draw the Muppet Show characters and characters from well-known cartoons. She said that drawing and art must be ingrained into her genes because her father drew, her grandfather who was a stonemason also drew and so does her brother …

Branka Grubic Photo: Sibenik In/ Private Album

Branka Grubic
Photo: Sibenik In/ Private Album

Branka Grubic has come a long way from the days of her Charlie Chaplin drawings and is an accomplished artist, internationally acknowledged for her skill and artistic insight. Acrylic on canvas has become her trade mark as so have her muses, which are people’s faces because, as she says, the faces are best for showing emotions. Branka has become known worldwide via internet galleries and has sold paintings in several countries including Great Britain, Saudi Arabia and Turkey. The January 2016 United States art awards represent the highly esteemed award her work utterly deserves. Well done, Branka! Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)

Croatia On Cusp Of Real Progress Despite Undermining

 From Left: Bozo Petrov, leader Most/Bridge Tihomir Oreskovic, Prime Minister designate Tomislav Karamarko, Leader HDZ Photo: Jurica Galoic/PIXSELL

From Left: Bozo Petrov, leader Most/Bridge
Tihomir Oreskovic, Prime Minister designate
Tomislav Karamarko, Leader HDZ
Photo: Jurica Galoic/PIXSELL


Timothy Less (a UK based political analyst on Eastern Europe according to LinkedIn profile in which he claims that his “primary role is running the Nova Europa political risk consultancy which helps businesses and international organisations to understand the impact of politics on their interests in Eastern Europe” ) wrote 5 January in International Policy Digest that with its new coalition government Croatia is embarking on a political experiment which, his article suggests, is destined to fail!

Croatia is embarking on a political experiment: a coalition government comprising the conservative Croatian Democratic Party (HDZ) and the insurgent Most party, led by a non-partisan prime minister, Tihomir Oreskovic, a businessman who has spent much of his life in Canada,” Timothy Less writes and continues: “…If all now goes according to Most’s (Bridge coalition of independents that is forming government with conservative HDZ ) plan, a reformist leader (Tihomir Oreskovic) with a track record of success in business will start to extricate Croatia from its long-standing economic malaise, marked by slow growth, high unemployment and dangerous levels of both public and private indebtedness… However, things may not turn out in the way that Most hopes. For one thing, Oreskovic will struggle to impose his authority. Not only is he a political unknown, but the party he represents is already losing its power base. Many of Most’s supporters voted to change Croatian politics and have instead seen Most put one of the establishment parties into power. If social media is a reliable guide, these supporters are already abandoning the party…”

Timothy Less goes further and prognosticates utter doom and gloom for Croatia in 2016 seemingly because – he suggests – the larger part of the new governing coalition, HDZ, will not – he says – want to be in government with Most/Bridge coalition for too long and will “spend the next few months picking squabbles with Most, distancing itself from controversial policies and reaching out to the key constituencies whose support it must win over ahead of the next ballot.” He further claims that Tihomir Oreskovic, the Prime Minister designate, will “struggle to control a cabinet comprised mainly of HDZ ministers and a parliament in which Most has just 18 (out of 151) seats,” and says that “2016 is likely to be a dismal period in Croatian politics, characterized by ineffective government and an incoherent policy agenda as the different parts of the coalition pull in different directions.”

A similarly biased analysis on governance value and immediate political flop that appointing of Tihomir Oreskovic as Prime Minister of Croatia will supposedly mean for the country was recently written by Tomislav Jakic, a journalist based in Zagreb Croatia, whose article “The Victory of Norval” not only assumes (like Timothy Less) that lack of political party alliance or belonging in a government head spells doom and gloom and inability to control the politicians in parliament, but it maliciously and wrongfully asserts that Croats living abroad and those living in Croatia are not equally Croatian. The latter platform is the hateful stand promoted by communists of former Yugoslavia and many subscribing to the left or centre-left political mood in Croatia today and it aspires to undermine the unity of all Croats – those in Croatia and those in diaspora.

“…Norval has defeated Zagreb,” writes Jakic, “The diaspora has overpowered the so-called homeland Croatia. All the citizens of the Republic of Croatia who were born in it, worked in it and earned their daily bread in it honestly are offended and humiliated because a man, although born in Croatia, but had lived abroad for such a long time (mostly in Canada) that he even does not speak well his mother language, is being brought to them as their Prime Minister. And that the immediate message to all from Croatia, to all who have earned their professional knowledge in Croatian schools and universities and applied them here and in the world, is that they are incapable, that there is not a single person living in Croatia capable of being a Prime Minister…” wrote Jakic.

This article by Jakic is not to be taken lightly – it is a serious attack on democracy and equal opportunity for all citizens of Croatia (no matter where they live in the world) to advance their life and professional and political circumstances as best their merit permits. It represents a loud element of a cancer that works at deteriorating the unifying fabric of all Croats in the world and as a suffocating force whose primary role is to disable and render ineffective all attempts to bring the essential reforms into Croatian economy, public administration, justice…so that it finally moves further away from the communism from which it stems. Tomislav Jakic’s said article represents the discrimination that anti-discrimination laws exist for – it is an appalling behaviour coming out of a pen of a journalist.

Timothy Less and Tomislav Jakic, and all others who use “old” measures to predict the future under “new” measures, appear to disregard the important fact that since it broke away from communist Yugoslavia in pursuit of democracy 25 years ago Croatia has had elected politicians only at the helm of its governments and these politicians failed to bring about the necessary changes and reforms essential to a well-functioning, just democracy that offers equal-opportunity to all of its citizens in contributing to its prosperity. Political suitability, protectionism, political and economic and public administration and judicial corruption had lost ground somewhat during those 25 years but not enough to mark real progress. Strong reforms are required in Croatia on all fronts of public administration especially, much stronger than those that had occurred. The idea of such reforms is not popular but it is the agenda that is seeing the formation of a new government.

I for one will always barrack for an opposition to a government because a parliamentary opposition has a very important role to play in the progress of public and citizen’s life but opposition based on ideological or discriminatory outbursts that are utterly unfair to a human being, not only a citizen of a country, is something that is abhorrent to me.

The government formed in Croatia is likely to be the one with the main goal of achieving the needed, albeit unpopular, major reforms and as such it is not likely to be popular with everyone but one can safely say that most Croats recognise the need for major reforms. Some people may not like it but they do recognise the need for major reforms and, therefore, there is a politically impacting chance that many who do not like the major reforms announced would ultimately be convinced of the benefits of those reforms. Most/Bridge coalition says that it is adamant it wants to govern in coalition with HDZ/Croatian Democratic Union and in this to have an important input into the key government departments/ ministries, such as justice and internal affairs that are essential in achieving the needed reforms. Sweeping reforms to public administration that will likely see a rather notable reduction of government administration and departments and red tape in order to further ease economic and investment growth as well as administrative processes involved in daily living are being flagged.

There is an underlying truth unfolding in the current political resolve of forming the new government in Croatia and that resolve has a great deal to do with the firm intent to effectuate the unpopular reforms that are needed, to bring home the reality of the well-worn although not always warming idiom: “No pain, no gain!”. Good luck, I say – about time!  So many habits and stifling administrative processes and attitudinal elements from communist Yugoslavia still exist in Croatia and they must be rooted out. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb); B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)

Croatia: A Unique Greeting Of New Year

Collage of photos of New Year Parties In Croatia Top photo: Fuzine Photo: Nel Pavletic/Pixsell

Collage of photos of
New Year Parties In Croatia
Top photo: Fuzine
Photo: Nel Pavletic/Pixsell


Fuzine is a beautiful town in Gorski Kotar, Croatia, located 730m above sea-level where the mountains meet the sea, up and inland of northern coast towards Rijeka. Picturesque mountains surround Fuzine, and so do the centuries-old evergreen forests and the beauty of its Bajer and Lepenica lakes.
Summer refreshment can be found fishing or sailing on the lakes. Attractive hiking, cycling and mountaineering routes are marked; you can go horseback riding and ride in carriages or tour the landscape on a tourist train. “Summer in Fuzine” is a traditional event, and the Old Year Send-Off/Greeting of the New Year, which takes place in the open every 31st December at noon exactly, is also famous and attracts an increasing number of visitors from all over the world.

Partying at Fuzine Croatia

Partying at Fuzine Croatia


Well actually, I think the people of Fuzine have found the perfect way to celebrate the New Year because, there, the celebrations include everyone: the old, the young, the children, the pets… What better way to greet the New Year than to be with everyone you love and live with as well as voisitors and revellers from elsewhere. This year Fuzine has ushered in the New Year exactly at Noon on New Year’s Eve for the 17th time. Each year more and more people come from outside Fuzine to take part in this unique community event; some 15 thousand guests/tourists came to Fuzine this year to witness this unique and most jolly event and that is a very high number given that the population of Fuzine and its surrounding villages is only about 1600. But what beautifully spirited 1600 it is! The New Year’s party on the town’s streets and square, of course, goes on till several hours after midnight New Year’s Day but by then the children have well participated in it and so have family pets. This year’s New Year’s party in Fuzine offered the purchase of yellow balloons for charitable fundraising purposes and on which New Year’s messages and resolutions were then written. Following are some photographs from Fuzine’s New Year’s party at Noon on New Year’s Eve 2015. Enjoy while clicking on images to enlarge. Ina Vukic, Prof. (Zgb);B.A., M.A.Ps. (Syd)

Fuzine Croatia


Cheer at Fuzine Croatia Ushering in 2016 at Noon December 31 Photo: Nel Pavletic/Pixsell

Cheer at Fuzine Croatia
Ushering in 2016
at Noon December 31
Photo: Nel Pavletic/Pixsell


Fuzine Croatia Ushering in New Year 2016 at Noon 31 DEcember 2015 Photo: Screenshot euronews

Fuzine Croatia
Ushering in New Year 2016
at Noon 31 DEcember 2015
Photo: Screenshot euronews


Pets and all at Fuzine Croatia New Year's Party Photo: Ne; Pavletic/Pixsell

Pets and all at
Fuzine Croatia New Year’s Party
Photo: Ne; Pavletic/Pixsell


Many wishes for New Year Fuzine Croatia New Year's Eve December 2015 Photo: Nel Pavletic/Pixsell

Many wishes for New Year
Fuzine Croatia
New Year’s Eve December 2015
Photo: Nel Pavletic/Pixsell


Happy New Year From Fuzine Croatia

Happy New Year
From Fuzine Croatia


Fuzine Croatia Can't wait for 2016 to kick in

Fuzine Croatia
Can’t wait for 2016 to kick in


Noon on New Year's Eve at Fuzine Croatia ushering in 2016

Noon on New Year’s Eve
at Fuzine Croatia
ushering in 2016


Fuzine Croatia wishes for New Year 2016 on NY Eve Photo: Nel Pavlekovic/Pixsell

Fuzine Croatia
wishes for New Year 2016
on NY Eve
Photo: Nel Pavlekovic/Pixsell


Unique New Year's Party Happens in Fuzine Croatia every year at Noon on 31 December

Unique New Year’s Party
Happens in Fuzine Croatia
every year at Noon on 31 December


Fuzine Croatia New Year's Eve 31 December 2015

Fuzine Croatia New Year’s Eve
31 December 2015

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