A Look Back: Serge Hollerbach


French Riviera at Night (acrylic, 40×30) is a recent work by Serge Hollerbach.

Born in 1923 in Pushkin, a suburb of St. Petersburg, Russia (then Leningrad), Serge Hollerbach drew constantly as a child, encouraged by an uncle who was an art and literary critic in Leningrad. An ardent and frequent visitor to the Hermitage Museum, Hollerbach decided at 17 that he would become a painter. He had studied at the High School of Art for only six months when the Nazis occupied the small town where he lived. “Subsequently, I spent the war years as a laborer in Germany, where I was sent with hundreds of thousands of Russian men and women to work in the fields and factories,” Hollerbach says.

After the war ended, he enrolled in the Academy of Fine Arts Munich, where he was “drilled in quick linear drawing and expressionistic characterization.” In 1949, he embarked on a career as a professional artist in New York City. By the late 1950s, he was exhibiting his work in the city, across the country and in Europe. A frequent contributor to The Artist’s Magazine throughout its history, Hollerbach, though legally blind, continues to produce work of beauty and vigor.

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