Rip Matteson 

Medium:  Oil, Pencil & Gouache, Cartoonist


Awaiting, Oil on Canvas, 14 x 16 in.

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Composition with Chair Legs, Oil on Canvas, 16 x 26 in.

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Still Life:  "How Vast a Memory Has Love", Oil on Canvas, 12 x 16 in.

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Rip Matteson (1920-2011)

Rip Matteson wanted to live to be 100.   That personal goal was cut short by just nine years.   In his 91 years he dedicated himself to art and painted until two weeks prior to his death in 2011.    In his view “drawing and painting, like music and dance and theater should be about beauty and pleasure”.  "To this end, a painter composes shapes, colors, lines, forms and space in ways to look attractive”. 

Although Rip painted a wide variety of subject matters, the figure was his true love and passion.  He found the figure the most beautiful and challenging as anything found in nature or in the imagination.   Rip felt that the figure “has been handsomely represented by the major artist for every period in art and yet no matter how many ways it has been portrayed, there still remains countless ways to express the figure’s special beauty”.

Before Rip even started school he knew he would make art his life.   To this end, he studied art in many schools:  San Jose State, UC Berkeley, California College of Arts and Crafts, Scuola Di Beue Art, Rome, Italy, Parsons School of Design, New York.   He has been an exhibiting artist for over 70 years, taught drawing and painting in colleges for over 40 years, had cartoons published in Playboy Magazine for 15 years, Punch Magazine for 10 years and over ten years in the New Yorker among many other miscellaneous publications.

His work developed from years of experience, training and works of artists admired from the past all mixed together in a personal way.   His major art influences were:

Andrei Rublev, Masaccio, Botticelli, Giorgione, Titian, El Greco, Coyo, Cezanne, Klimt, Egon Schiele, Modigliani, Matisse.

“Beauty, the search for it and its sharing is the calling of the artist.  How rich the lives of those who choose to paint, for beauty so generously fills the world.”  Rip Matteson, 2005


Ingrid Seated, Gouache and Pencil on Paper, 29 x 22 in.

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