Matt Rugg Obituary

Matt Rugg, my late husband, was an artist renowned for his unique style and an esteemed educator at The Chelsea School of Art in London for over thirty years.

He was born in Bridgwater, Somerset. As a child, Matt spent his youth in the village of Limpley Stoke, where he would seek adventure in playful exploration, collecting objects that evoked a sense of intrigue, and creatively expressing it in his art.

His family moved to Bath in 1942, where he witnessed the traumatic bombing raids of Baedeker, which stayed with him. After his parents’ separation post-World War II, he was raised by his sister, Myra, and brother-in-law John. He completed his education by graduating with a first-class degree in fine art from King’s College, University in Durham.

During the 1960s, Matt made a name for himself as a painter and exhibited in London, Milan, and Paris. His work was renowned for its lyrical interpretation, employing found materials that created unique reliefs and exceptional line work. His fascination with furniture design led him to make several bespoke pieces.

In 1965, Matt joined The Chelsea School of Art as a sculpture teacher, eventually shifting his focus on teaching art entirely, refraining from exhibiting further from the late 1970s onwards.

In 2011, he returned to the art scene by creating an exceptional solo exhibition called "Silent Notation." His work drew inspiration from John Cage, which captivated the contemporary art audience and kept him relevant in the eyes of critics and art lovers alike.

Matt’s unique artistic style and charming sense of humor always shone through in everything he did, be it as an artist or in his life.

In 1967, he married Akua Thomas, and although they separated a few years later, they remained friends. I met Matt in 1984, while teaching art history at The Chelsea School of Art, and we married the following year. Together, we have a son, Jack.

Matt Rugg is survived by me, his son Jack, his sister Myra, and his half-sister Sandra.


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    Joaquin Cain is a 39 year old school teacher and blogger from the United States. He has a passion for education and is always looking for new and innovative ways to help his students learn. He is also a big believer in the power of technology and its ability to help improve education.