Skip to main content

Szyk Expert Irvin Ungar


Irvin Ungar is the world’s foremost expert on the art of Arthur Szyk and the tireless force behind the Szyk renaissance. A former pulpit rabbi fluent in Jewish history and tradition, Irvin is the CEO and founder of Historicana, an antiquarian book firm and small publishing house of Szyk imprints.

Irvin Ungar with Katja Widmann, Curator at the Deutsches Historisches Museum. Burlingame, California.Beginning in 1987, Irvin first specialized in Szyk’s remarkable illustrated books and quickly expanded his repertoire to include original art, fine art prints, and other important Szyk works. He has curated and consulted for numerous Szyk exhibitions at major institutions worldwide, including: the New-York Historical Society (New York City); the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco; the Deutsches Historisches Museum (Berlin); the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (Washington, DC); and the Library of Congress.

Irvin is the author of Arthur Szyk: Soldier in Art (2017 National Jewish Book Award winner) and Justice Illuminated: The Art of Arthur Szyk (1998). His most recent book Arthur Szyk Preserved: Institutional Collections of Original Art was published in 2023. Additionally, Irvin is the co-producer of the documentary film, “Soldier in Art: Arthur Szyk,” and the publisher of the luxury limited edition of The Szyk Haggadah (2008). He also served as the curator of The Arthur Szyk Society (1997-2017) and its traveling exhibition program, and continues lecturing and speaking about Szyk on university campuses, museums and other venues around the world.

Irvin’s memoirs on his life with Arthur Szyk have been accepted by a major university press and will be forthcoming.