Ron was born and raised near St. Paul, Minnesota, and attended the University of Minnesota in Duluth, on the shores of Lake Superior. He received a BFA in 1984. From 1984 – 1987, he was a full-time student at Atelier LeSueur, a small classical realist art school in the Minneapolis area. There he studied under Richard Lack among others, and focused on learning how to “see,” painting and drawing directly from nature, models, and still-lives.
In 1989, he moved West and ended up by chance in the Mendocino, California area where he found a great supportive community of artists and friends. Ron had his first solo show there in 1990. At that same time, he began teaching and facilitating life drawing groups.
In 1992, he packed up and moved to southern France, in the countryside east of Toulouse. There he painted, taught some, and shipped his finished work back to a gallery in Mendocino.
In 1995, he returned to the states and traveled around the Southwest, looking for a place he could build a home and live as a full-time artist. At a friend's suggestion, he made a trip to Tuscarora, Nevada, and fell in love with the ghost town, bought an old ruin from the 1870’s, and got to work restoring it.
Today Ron and his wife, jeweler Gail Rappa, and their 3-year-old son, Theo live year round in Tuscarora, making art and restoring their home.
"I love to see the abstract in nature, squinting and closing one eye, imagining a painting. My paintings are often about capturing the beauty in ordinary, discarded things: rusty cars, a broken down fence, the shadows cast from old pickets in the snow. All becomes a composition, a subject, something my eye wants to linger over. I need to be right there in the environment, holding still, to find a composition and capture the colors I see with my palette of primary paint. My goal is that the “abstract” designs I paint retain the feeling of space, electricity and interaction of the objects, and ultimately express a feeling of place."
1993-1994 Plein Air Painting Residency, Southern France
1989-1992 Continuing student, figure painting and drawing College of the Redwoods, Fort Bragg, California
1987-1988 University of Minnesota, Art History, Languages, History of Architecture University of Minnesota, Twin Cities campus
1987 Portrait student Richard Lack, Minneapolis, Minnesota
1984-1987 Full-time student, Atelier Le Sueur, Excelsior, Minnesota
1980-1984 University of Minnesota, B.F.A. Studio Arts; School & Department Honors University of Minnesota, Duluth, Minnesota
1997-2006 Painting and Drawing Great BasinCollege, Elko,
2006-2007 Plein Air Instructor, St. Mary’s Art Center,
Virginia City, Nevada
2000 Plein Air Instructor Live Art, Soreze, France
1998 Plein air Instructor MendocinoArtCenter,
1994-1995 Plein Air Instructor Live Art, Santa Rosa,
1994 Plein Air Instructor Live Art, Soreze, France
1991 Plein Air Instructor Le Chien Vert, Lacrosille,
1993 Plein Air Instructor MendocinoArtCenter,
1993 Plein Air Instructor Le Chien Vert Lacrosille,
1991 Plein Air Instructor MendocinoArtCenter
1991 Lecturer “Early California Landscape Painters”
1990-1991 Facilitated life drawings sessions Mendocino Art
2007 Renown Health Center: Permanent Collection, Reno,
2006 Three person exhibit: Great Basin Gallery
20Anniversary Exhibition, Carson City Courthouse,
Carson City, Nevada
2004 Two-person exhibit, Nash Gallery, Crockett, CA.
2004 Nevada Touring Initiative, NevadaMuseum of Art,
2002 Solo Exhibit, William Zimmer Gallery, Mendocino,
2002 Solo Exhibit, RenoCity Hall, Reno, Nevada
2001 Guest Artist, NevadaMuseum of Art, Reno, Nevada
2001 Group Show, Contemporary Arts Collective,
Las Vegas, Nevada
2000 Invitational exhibit, WesternFolk-LifeCenter, Elko,
2000 Solo Exhibit, Main Street Gallery, Murphy, California
2000 Solo Exhibit, Northeastern NevadaMuseum, Elko,
1998 Get Real Group show, Galleria Mesa, Mesa, Arizona
1995 Solo Exhibit, Gallery Mendocino, Mendocino, CA.
1994 Solo Exhibit, Gallery Mendocino, Mendocino, CA.
1994 Group show, Le Chien Vert, Lacrosille, France
1994 One-person exhibit, Sparkasse Bank, Grunstadt,
1993 Solo Exhibit, Gallery Mendocino, Mendocino, CA.
1993 Solo Exhibit, Chamber of Commerce, Castres, France
1992 Two-Person exhibit, Winona Gallery, Mendocino, CA
1991 Solo Exhibit, Showcase Gallery, Mendocino, CA
1991 Solo Exhibit, NorthCoast Artists, Fort Bragg, CA
1990 Juried Participant, FortBraggCenter for the Arts,
Fort Bragg, California
1990 Two-person exhibit, Showcase Gallery,