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Series I: Correspondence, 1964-2019
Series II: Writings and Diaries of Serge Hollerbach, 1970s-2017, undated
Series III: Documents and Biographical Materials, 1936-2010
At a Glance
The papers are arranged in six series.
Serge Hollerbach's personal and professional correspondence comprises about one-third of the collection. The correspondence is divided into three sub-series: with individuals, with family members, and with organizations. Hollerbach corresponded in Russian and English with numerous artists, writers and academics in the United States, France and Russia, including Ivan Elagin, René Guerra, Oleg Lasunskii and Alexis Rannit, and others.
The second major part of the collection is comprised of published and unpublished writings by Serge Hollerbach in various formats. The writings are divided into five sub-series. The first sub-series is comprised of Hollerbach's articles and essays on various topics in art and society, containing both manuscript texts and print publications. The remaining sub-series contain Hollerbach's poetry, autobiographical writings, diaries and journals, and notes and drafts.
The collection contains a small number of documents related to Serge Hollerbach's time in Munich, where he was a student at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts from 1946-1949. The majority of the collection is drawn from his residency in New York City (beginning in 1951) and his artistic practice there. The collection also contains articles and reviews written by others in Russian and English on the art, writings and life of Serge Hollerbach.
The collection contains photographs of Serge Hollerbach along with a number of noted artists and Russian émigrés. The collection contains a relatively small but significant series of original artworks by Serge Hollerbach, comprising 22 sketchbooks and 167 drawings and sketches.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
This collection has no restrictions.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Serge Hollerbach Papers; Box and Folder; Bakhmeteff Archive, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
Additions to the collection are expected.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Collection-level record describing unprocessed material made public in summer 2018 as part of the Hidden Collections initiative.
The collection was processed and finding aid written by Marlow Davis in summer 2019 during the graduate student internship in primary sources (under the supervision of Katia Davidenko).
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
Serge Hollerbach (Sergei Lvovich Gollerbakh) was born in Pushkin, Russia (Tsarskoe Selo) on November 1, 1923. He initiated his artistic training in Leningrad with the encouragement of his uncle, Erich Hollerbach, a noted literary and art critic.
Following the Nazi occupation of the areas surrounding Leningrad in June 1941, Hollerbach was sent to Germany to work as a forced laborer for the duration of the war. Along with thousands of other forced laborers from occupied territories, Hollerbach was freed by the US Army in May, 1945. He chose to remain in Germany and attended the Munich Academy of Fine Arts from 1946 to 1949. Hollerbach emigrated to the United States in late 1949. He settled in New York City, where he studied at the Art Students League and the American Art School.
Hollerbach taught painting at the National Academy School of Fine Arts in New York for many years and has conducted workshops across the country. An Academician at the National Academy of Design, he has served as honorary president of the American Watercolor Society and also belongs to Allied Artists of America, Audubon Artists, and the National Society of Painters in Casein and Acrylic.
His publications include Composing in Acrylics (Watson-Guptill, 1988), City's Hot Shadows (also in Russian; Albatros Publishing House Paris, 1990), and the memoir New York Notebook (in Russian; The New Review Publishing, 2013), among others. He has published articles in American Artist, The Artist's Magazine, The New Review, Novoe Russkoe Slovo and Today's Art.
Hollerbach's work is held in several private and public collections, including the National Academy of Design in New York, the Yale University Art Gallery, the University of Kentucky Art Museum, The Georgia Museum of Art, The Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio, and the Philbrook Art Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma.