Ljerka Njerš


About the author

Trst, 2017. Bienale Internationale DonnaTrst 2017., Bienale Internationale Donna

Artist statement:

I have been creating something since I remember. I was a child when I decided to become an artist. The inexhaustible possibilities of today’s technology combined with ancient techniques made me simply fall in love with ceramics, especially RAKU. The mysteries and ruled of this particular technique have also determined the way I work.

My favourite subjects are the female body, flowers and leaves, which have to fit within a given shape, whether square or round. However, the line of the drawing is my main concern. The landscapes also offers many possibilities. Whether I paint on canvas, paper or choose clay surface, I follow the same pattern.

I know that my work gives people pleasure and joy. As I work, I aniticipate the happiness my creations will give to the viewer and I see that they wish to have and behold every day something that I have created. This appretiation of my work by others makes me happy and fulfilled. All beautiful things which surround me inspire me: the setting of the sun, the impression of a leaf on wet clay…

The legacy in paintings and ceramics will survive me for centuries.


Ljerka Njerš graduated from the Applied Art School (Ceramics Section), Zagreb, having been taught by the well-known ceramicist Blanka Dužanec. She then studied painting at the Fine Arts Academy in Zagreb, passing out from the class of Marin Tartaglia. Since then she has been a professional artist and has regularly exhibited at numerous ceramic exhibitions at home and abroad. As well as many appearances in collective exhibitions, she has had over 80 one-woman shows. And in her periods of study abroad she has taken part in many meetings and symposia.

One very important such trip was in 1987, to Portugal, where she worked in the Santana stoneware factory, Lisbon, next year being invited to the famed porcelain works of Vista Alegre. In 1988 she spent time in the famed Curwen Studio in London (run by Stanley Jones), where she did a cycle of coloured lithographs. One of these was chosen for the prestigious Summer Exhibition in the Royal Academy. Since 1985 she has been taking part in auctions of contemporary ceramics by the renowned London auction houses Cristie’s and Bonhams. In that year she also started her work in concert with the Zagreb City Museum. She is a member of Croatian artists’ associations (HDLU and ULUPUH) and of the Society of Designer and Craftsman in London. Since 1992 she has been involved with the charitable work of the order of St Lazarus.


Several short documentary films have been made about the ceramics and paintings of Ljerka Njerš, as well as an animated documentary, The Art of Clay and Fire, by Ernest Gregl.

She has won a number of professional and public awards and commendations. She won the City of Zagreb Prize in 1998, and has been awarded the order of the Croatian Morning Star (with the figure of Marko Marulić) for contributions to culture. As well as painting, ceramics and prints, she deals with illustrations and book design. She lives and works in Zagreb.

Awards and recognitions



Important books



autor: Ljerka Njerš

Ljerka Njerš - 2018 - All rights reserved izrada: dzDesign