Erich Šlomović

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Erich Šlomović
E. Šlomović.jpg
Born 1915
Đakovo, Austro-Hungarian Empire, (now Croatia)
Died 1942 (aged 27)
Around Ćuprija, Kingdom of Yugoslavia, (now Serbia)
Cause of death Murdered in Holocaust
Nationality Yugoslav
Occupation Art collector
Employer Ambroise Vollard
Known for His art collection
Parent(s) Bernard and Roza Šlomović
Relatives Egon Šlomović

Erich Šlomović (Serbian Latin: Erih Šlomović, also known as Erich Chlomovitch) (1915–1942) was a Jewish art collector in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.[1][2] He was an assistant and protégé of Ambroise Vollard.[3]

Early life[edit]

Šlomović was born in Đakovo (Austro-Hungarian Empire) in 1915 to a Jewish family of Bernard and Roza Šlomović. He had a brother, Egon.[4][5][6]


In the 1930s, Šlomović moved to Paris, where he was befriended by legendary art collector Ambroise Vollard. Through Vollard, Šlomović met the greatest artists of the age, including Picasso, Matisse, Cocteau, Rouault among others, and was able to amass an impressive personal collection of some 600 works. Vollard died in a car accident in July 1939. Shortly after that, with France on the brink of Nazi invasion, Šlomović decided to return to Yugoslavia, where the war had not yet spread. He left about 200 artworks in a vault in the Société Générale in Paris, and the rest he had shipped via diplomatic pouch to Belgrade. These were exhibited at a highly acclaimed exhibition in Zagreb in 1940.[5][7]

World War II[edit]

During World War II, with the Independent State of Croatia establishment in 1941, Šlomović and his family moved to Bačina in Serbia in an attempt to save themselves.[5] While in Bačina, Šlomović hid the paintings he brought with him.[5] Later, as a part of the German reprisals of 100 Serbian men shot for every German soldier killed, Bernard, Erich and Egon were taken to detention camp in Ćuprija. Soon after, they were all killed. Erich's mother Rosa and female cousin Mara were not touched and neither was his collection. They both survived the Holocaust hidden by the local population.[5]


After his death, Šlomović mother donated his collection to the National Museum of Serbia. In 1989 Veljko Bulajić directed Donator, a movie dedicated to Šlomović's tragic life while in 2004 Momo Kapor wrote a book about his life. The paintings in the Société Generale bank were discovered in 1979 when the bank was allowed to open the vault to recover unpaid storage fees. There is a legal dispute over the ownership of those paintings.[5]


  1. ^ Defined as such in a Dutch source in English:
  2. ^ In French rendered as "juif yougoslave":
  3. ^ "Kontroverzna diplomatska pošiljka s ciljem - Beograd" (in Croatian). Deutsche Welle. 2010-06-30. 
  4. ^ D’Arcy, David. "The Mysterious Mr. Slomovic". artnet. Retrieved 10 December 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f (in Croatian) Ha-Kol (Glasilo Židovske zajednice u Hrvatskoj); Vesna Domany Hardy; O zbirci Ericha Šlomovića; stranica 43, 44, 45, 46; broj 103, siječanj / veljača 2008.
  6. ^ "Slike koje je 1939. Hrvat spasio od Hitlera idu na najveću aukciju godine" (in Croatian). Jutarnji list. 2010-04-25. 
  7. ^ "Collection Erich Chlomovitch" Musee National de Belgrade, published by Muzejsko - galerijski centar, Zagreb, Croatia, 1989

Further reading[edit]

  • Zbirka Erich Šlomović iz Narodnog muzeja u Beogradu: Muzejsko galerijski centar, Muzejski prostor, Zagreb, 7.12.1989 - 3.1.1990
  • Momo Kapor: Dosije Šlomović, Knjiga-Komerc Belgrade, 2004. ISBN 8677120068
  • Victor Perry "Stolen Art"publisher Gefen, Jerusalem, 2000

External links[edit]