Ruth Rippon (1927 - )
Ruth Rippon is one of Sacramento’s best known – and best loved – artists. Her work is acclaimed nationally and internationally for its whimsy and humanism. She was born and raised in Sacramento, and continues to live and work here.
Ruth was certain she wanted to pursue some form of art as a career, and enrolled at the prestigious College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland, where she studied under famed sculptor Antonio Prieta.
Throughout her career, Ruth has worked to promote an appreciation of ceramics and sculpture with the general public. One of her first endeavors was the Creative Artists’ League, which sought to boost the profile and reputation of local artisans. Founded in 1953, the group successfully lobbied the Crocker Art Museum for more locally-themed exhibits.
In 1956, Ruth took a job that she would remain in for more than three decades: as an instructor at Sacramento State. She helped found their much-lauded ceramics program, and trained hundreds of students during her tenure there. Many of those students have gone on to successful careers themselves, as sculptors and teachers.
Of Ruth’s recent work, the most famous are undoubtedly her “lollies” (short for “little old ladies”). She was commissioned to create two in clay for the Pavilions Mall in Sacramento, and then did a bronze casting for a single lollie who sits at the entrance of the UC Davis Medical Center’s Ambulatory Care facility.