In Memoriam

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Ruth Volkmann ’54

A picture of Ruth Volkmann

Ruth Volkmann ’54, June 15, 2013, in Seattle, Washington. Ruth earned a BA and BFA from Reed and the Museum Art School (Pacific Northwest College of Art). She studied with Lloyd Reynolds [English & art 1929–69], painter Michael Russo, and sculptor Frederic Littman in 1948–56. She described her own work, done in acrylic on canvas and on hardboard, as primitive realism. Ruth sought to enlarge the viewer’s appreciation of the natural world by portraying it in a flat perspective. She avoided spatial and atmospheric depth and eliminated some scenic details in order to create a painting that was more “true,” she said, rather than realistic. Her work appeared in numerous exhibitions in the Pacific Northwest. Ruth taught art in public schools and worked in commercial art in Zurich, Switzerland. She had a great love for New England, where she spent her childhood, and the Pacific Northwest coast and mountain ranges. She lived in Vermont and in Eugene, Oregon, before moving to the Seattle area in the early ’80s. Survivors include her sisters, Ann Volkmann Dick ’50 and Elizabeth Young.

Appeared in Reed magazine: March 2014

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