Theresa Pollak

Born in 1899, Theresa Pollak soon became a major fixture in Richmond art scene and beyond. In 1928, she founded the art department at the Richmond Professional Institute, which grew into Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts, now ranked as the number one public art school in America. A past student of Hans Hofmann, she showed at The Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, The Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C., and The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, among many others. Mastering a unique abstract expressionist tone, Pollak’s hand moves fluidly through figures, landscapes, and street scenes. Scratchy black ink and billowy pastels capture a liveliness characteristic of her work. Pollak passed away in 2002, though her impact on the Richmond arts community lives on.