Ivaylo Hristov

  • Bulgaria (b. 1979)
  • Currently in Sofia, Bulgaria.
  • Bulgarian visual artist. Graduated Painting at the National Art Academy, Sofia, Bulgaria (2005). He has won numerous awards for painting, drawing and design. He has presented his five own projects in Bulgaria.



I am actively engaged in art since 2000, and I did my first solo exhibition at the National Art Gallery, Sofia in 2006.

In the beginning my artistic work was focused in purely figural compositions, in large-format poliptises.

Gradually I passed to plastic searches in abstract artworks with the inclusion of various materials and textures. This direction of work proved to be a base in my works to this day.

For me especially interesting and curious is the combination of different matters with the traditional techniques of oil painting on canvas or classical pencil drawing on watercolour paper.

In the past few years I actively include light in painting and drawing.

The LED gives me expanded opportunities for expression in combination with the traditional materials. In this way I create my “Lighting” drawings and the so called painting installations.

Also, in the past 3-4 years I create “Lighting” objects – ready-made or handmade by me objects, which I combine with LED too. “Lighting tools” have become a continuous series that I ground on some philosophical texts and reflections on the lack of presence of the human and the sole existence of the tool, that are published online.

Although at first glance they look different, all of my works have a leading direction – the search of enriched expression tools through wide combining of techniques and materials in different theme directions. Drawing, painting, print on textiles and paper, objects, video and light are mixed in different combinations.

I find that my works are in unison with the current trends towards more and stronger materiality to a grade overreaching the trite ready-made.

For my own creative work I would say that it is in an incessant pursuit of new ideas motivated by according technical expression, both in my drawings and paintings and in the objects and installations with light.

I live and work in Sofia, Bulgaria.

More information about my projects can be found on my site at:


Ivaylo Hristov was born 1979 in Shumen, Bulgaria.

He is actively involved in art from the 2000s.

At the beginning of his artistic path, Ivaylo is influenced by American and Spanish artists from the 60s and this is reflected in his early figurative or abstract paintings in the period until 2008.

Ivaylo Hristov completed an MA in Painting at the National Academy of Arts in 2005. After that resided in Paris at the Residence program in Cité des Arts.

Hristov has presented works in five solo exhibitions at Arhis Gallery, Bulart Gallery and National Art Gallery, BG.

He has also presented work in almost 60 group exhibitions in Bulgaria, Europe and America, including at Transition Gallery, London, UK, Pristine Galerie, MX and SAMCA (Sofia Arsenal - Museum for Contemporary Art), Sofia, BG. In 2016 he presents his work in international exhibition Acts of Sedition at WhiteBox Gallery, NY, USA.

Since 2000, he has won 22 awards for painting, drawing, photography, advertising and design including a FutureFest 2016 Art Prize: Future Work, London, UK and a Union of Bulgarian Artists Award for Drawing in 2015.

Along with his artistic activity Ivaylo Hristov works in the advertising field.

It also influences his works, even intentional, looking for point of intersection between art, advertising and design.

In the last 10 years, the works of Ivaylo Hristov can be defined as boundary conditions between different artistic practices in search of new ways of expression in the spirit of our times: art objects and site-specific installations with light, combinations of classical techniques of drawing with LED; painting installations and prints. Very often his installations include handmade objects created by himself.

The theme of the being of objects, tools and human interaction with them is leading for the author in recent years. Ivaylo Hristov is often looking for philosophical rationale for his artistic works and goes for an in-depth study of each new art project. Key projects are Lighting Tools, Marked Objects, Super Nature- and Ideology.

Strong influence on his work invariably have current cultural and social changes in society, political and military events of our recent history. The individual and psychological impact of the environment and all modern problems, reflecting on perception of reality, are essential for him.

He believes that the dynamic daily routine and the hyper-intense lifestyle of the contemporary person is the challenge to rediscover the truly valuable things around us, improve ourselves and, with a lot of effort, make the world around us a tad better.

In his work, he says that he is in a ceaseless search of new artistic values grounded on sound technical expression.

Ivaylo Hristov lives and works in Sofia, Bulgaria.

His works are in public and private collections in Bulgaria, Europe and USA.


  • Lighting Tools - Exhibition Catalogue, Sofia
  • Real Love Story Catalogue, UniCredit Studio, Sofia


  • Visible / Invisible exhibition catalogue. Graffit Gallery, Varna.

  • 3rd National Biennial of Drawing Catalogue, Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria.

  • Imago Mundi - Luciano Benetton Collection. Bulgaria: Save the Dream. Contemporary Artists from Bulgaria

  • Approaches to Happiness Catalogue, Credo Bonum Galley, Sofia
    Curated by Evelyna Kokoranova
  • Ruf Award - Short List. Gaudenz Ruf Awards, Sofia
  • 4th International Biennial of Drawing, Pizlen, Czech Republic
  • 2nd International Biennial Pastel, Nowy Sacz, Poland