About Us

Holbein is a family owned Japanese Company with head offices in Osaka Japan. The company was formed just before the turn of the last century, and took the name of the much revered European artist Hans Holbein in the 1930's. From that time, Holbein’s presence has been significant, not only in Southeast Asia where they hold an impressive 75 percent of the Japanese professional artists' market, but also in North America, Australia and Europe.

One of the world's largest manufacturers of professional artists' materials, Holbein Artist Materials, the trading company, and Holbein Works, the color factory collectively employ 300 people, including 12 color chemists. In addition, Holbein has 40 subsidiary and associate companies manufacturing everything from framing material and manikins to quality metal and porcelain accessories, paper products, and etching presses.

Holbein color chemists, using only the finest pigments available, have achieved the highest standards of quality control in the industry, working to precise standards at each stage of the manufacturing process. The result is unerring consistency from production run to production run.

Holbein is unique in the art material trade because they do not produce any entry level/student quality color products. Each of the 16 artists' grade color lines is adapted to meet the special requirements of the professional/serious artists with permanence, brilliance, and technique in mind. Indeed, the full range of Holbein color products offer unique characteristics which set them apart from all competitive lines regardless of origin.

HK Holbein is the North American Agent for all things Holbein. Founded in 1977 by Peter Hopper, HK Holbein has two offices one in Montreal, Canada and one in Burlington, Vermont. HK Holbein also distributes Strathmore Paper, Stratford & York Artist Brushes, Educational Colors, General Pencil and a variety of other lines, all related to the art material trade.

Dedicated to excellence, Holbein believes there is no substitute for quality. Holbein is the artists' choice, every time!