Robert K. Hollenbaugh

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Robert “Bob” Kingsly Hollenbaugh (American, 1917-2005) Sometimes spelled Kingsley, was a painter and teacher primarily known for his landscape, portrait and figurative works in oil as well as drawings. Robert was born March 31, 1917 in New York to Clarence Edward Hollenbaugh (Jan. 16, 1892-July 26, 1947) and Pauline A. (née Wertman) Hollenbaugh (1892-) who were married on February 9, 1916 in Portville, NY. His early education was at the High School in Harrisburg, PA, where his father was from. Circa 1934, he continued studies doing blueprint work five afternoons a week at the Burgard Vocational High School in Buffalo, NY under the National Defense Training Program. At the same time, Robert was also studying three nights a week at the Art Institute of Buffalo, NY under William B. Rowe (American, 1910-1955), when the school was in the Edwards Building. He continued art studies and also taught at the Art Institute until 1941 when he sought a Guggenheim Fellowship to help him realize his life’s ambition—to paint the flowing landscapes of Pennsylvania.

During his early years in Buffalo, he resided with his Grandmother Nettie Wertman (c1867-) and they resided at 257 Masten Avenue. Robert married Dorothy Alice (née Pfeil) Hollenbaugh (1918-2000) and they had a son Charles R. Hollenbaugh (1945-2011). Circa the mid-late 1940’s the family resided in Detroit, MI, later moving back to the Buffalo area. Robert passed away of July 24, 2005 at the age of eighty-eight.

Early in his art career, the Buffalo News stated about the young artist’s work from a 1940 exhibition of drawings held at the new Buffalo Cyclorama Rotunda building, “The making of a serious artist can be felt in the compositions. The mobility of his themes and techniques seem not so much the outcome of artistic uncertainty as the result of keen observation stored up and reborn from a fertile creative memory.”


Chronology:

1917- March 31, born, to Clarence Edward Hollenbaugh (Jan. 16, 1892-July 26, 1947) and Pauline A. (née Wertman) Hollenbaugh (1892-), New York.

Circa Mid 1930’s-1941- Robert studied at the Art Institute of Buffalo, NY.

1938- August 29-September 2, exhibited, group show, “Fall Show”, Art Institute of Buffalo, Buffalo, NY.

1939- May 19-26 (extended to almost 3 weeks), exhibited, group show, Art Institute of Buffalo, Shea’s Theater, in the lobby and mezzanine, Buffalo, NY.

1940- April 13-27, exhibited, group show, Art Institute of Buffalo, Shea’s Theater, Buffalo, NY. October 21-November 10 (extended into December), exhibited, solo show of drawings shown, Cyclorama Rotunda Building, sponsored by the Grosvenor Library, Buffalo, NY. November 25-December 8, exhibited, group show, “National Art Week District Exhibit of Western New York Artists”, Buffalo Museum of Science, Buffalo, NY.

1941- May 5-30, Exhibited, group show, “Statewide Exhibition”, for the portrait painting “Crystal” and the painting “Tag in Buffalo”, Syracuse Museum of Fine Arts, Syracuse, NY. November 17-?, exhibited, group show, “National Art Week District Exhibit of Western New York Artists”, oils shown and Robert was one of the ninety-five artist works that were honored with “Best” Tag (No. 241 in show), Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY.

1942- February 14-March 2, exhibited, solo show of oils, J.N. Adam’s Fifth Floor Gallery, Buffalo, NY. April, exhibited, group show, Art Institute of Buffalo, painting shown “East Buffalo”, Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY. November 23-December 1, exhibited, group invitational, “Exhibition in Observance of the 10th Anniversary of American Art Week”, twenty-one artists showed, J.N. Adams Fifth Floor Galleries, Buffalo, NY.

1945- February 26, their son Charles R. Hollenbaugh was born.

Circa mid-late 1940’s- Robert and his family resided in Detroit, MI.

2000- May 28, Robert’s wife Dorothy passed away, Buffalo, NY.

2005- July 24, Robert died at the age of eighty-eight.

2011- March 1, their son Charles died, Buffalo, NY.

Memberships/Associations: Art Institute of Buffalo, NY.

Awards/Honors: “Best” Tag, received for his painting (No. 241 in show) at the “National Art Week District Exhibit of Western New York Artists”, Albright Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY, 1941.

(Written & compiled by Mark Strong of Meibohm Fine Arts, East Aurora, NY, meibohmfinearts.com, sources: Too long to list here and are furnished upon request.)
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