Leonid Talochkin (1936–2002) was a collector of Soviet unofficial art of the 1960s–1990s, a faithful friend of the artists, and a historiographer of the Soviet underground. In the early 1960s, he became part of the circle around the Moscow nonconformist artists and began collecting their work. By the mid-1970s he had around 600 works in his possession and devoted all of his time to archiving unofficial art.
Talochkin began to assemble his archive in the early 1960s. It contains several thousand documents, including: catalogues of apartment shows; manuscripts by underground writers, poets (Genrikh Sapgir, Yuri Mamleev), and artists (Oskar Rabin, Evgeny Kropivnitsky); and correspondence with émigré artists (Mikhail Chernyshov, Vitaly Komar and Alexander Melamid, Mikhail Roginsky), foreign Slavic studies scholars ( Jindřich Chalupecký, John Bowlt), collectors, and Russian and foreign museums and art institutions; hundreds of documentary photographs from the 1960s through the 1990s; numerous exhibition invitations, including some rare handwritten ones; booklets, postcards, posters, and newspaper clippings.
In 2014, the Leonid Talochkin archive became part of Garage Archive Collection.
One of the most important parts of the archive comprises Talochkin’s diaries, which contain detailed accounts of his everyday life and that of his artist friends. This part of the archive is restricted access, and most of the diaries will only become publicly available many years from now, when the contents will no longer impact on the private life of the diaries’ protagonists.