John Ruthven holds pre-Christmas Open House

ruthven-friendsBy Martha B. Jacob –

John Ruthven, naturalist, author, lecturer and internationally known artist of wildlife, held his second annual Pre-Christmas Open House on Nov. 20 at his gallery on Grant Avenue in historic Georgetown.
Ruthven was celebrating the 45th anniversary of Wildlife Internationale, Inc., Ruthven’s publishing company and The Thompson House Gallery, the place where his original paintings, drawings and limited edition prints are displayed and for sale.
According to Selma Pitzer, Ruthven’s assistant and office manager, the open house was attended by many people who have followed Ruthven’s career through the years.
“During this year’s pre-Christmas Open House we were fortunate enough to have Mary Kate from the Cincinnati Zoo with us,” Pitzer said. “She brought out a screech owl and a Chinese water dragon for folks to enjoy seeing.
“John has recently been commissioned to create an original water color painting of the screech owl. The photos we took at the event will be useful while he is working on the painting.
She continued, “The show was crowded and full of enthusiastic wildlife fans who enjoyed visiting with John, seeing and purchasing his artwork. John is always a great host with plenty of stories to share of his many life experiences and also celebrated his 92nd birthday.”
Pitzer said that Ruthven is still extremely active, involved in a number of organizations, is an avid walker and hiker and travels extensively keeping up with his busy painting schedule.
Other recent commissions for Ruthven’s art works include a painting of the first statehouse of Ohio located in Chillicothe, Red-headed Woodpeckers, Adele penguins, a screech owl and a painting for the St. Louis Cardinals. The image of the Bengal Tiger used by the Cincinnati Bengals is also from one of Ruthven’s original paintings.
“John has also been asked by the Ohio Division of Wildlife to create his second original painting of a cardinal that is being produced as a new license plate for Ohio,” Pitzer said. “They are now available to order. This was certainly an honor for Mr. Ruthven to be asked and he also created a limited edition of prints called ‘Traveler’ in the same image of a cardinal and buckeye leaf and nut.”
There is currently a book available about John Ruthven’s life called John A. Ruthven…in the Audubon Tradition, which was published several years ago that is available. It follows Ruthven’s one-man art show that was held in Cincinnati at the Cincinnati Museum Center.
To see most of Ruthven’s works, visit the Gallery or visit