Norman Rubington, internationally known painter, poet and collagist, died suddenly on Sunday, January 1, 1991.
After attending Yale School of Fine Arts in 1943 and military service in the Orient, he studied in Paris at the Ecole des Heaux Artes, Academie de la Grande Chaumiere. His work was immediately accepted in the Salons, where he was invited to join a group of French painters and was the only American to participate regularly with them. Rubington illustrated 12 Painters, 12 Poets (Douze Paintres, Douze Poetes) a limited edition published by the group. In 1951 Rubington was awarded the Prix de Rome. The Tiffany and Guggenheim awards followed, enabling him to return to his Paris base in 1954.
Writing under his nom de plume of Akbar del Piombo and using collages of l9th century engravings for the illustrations, he produced a series of satirical works for the Olympia Press edited by Maurice Girodias, called the Far 0ut Books. The subject matter was on drugs, war, space and society in general. His unique film adaptation was the forerunner of the Monty Python Flying Circus.
After illustrating the Olympia Reader for the Grove Press in 1965, he returned to New York, where he continued to work. The range of his paintings were not bound by any formula or locked into any stylistic constraint; they were concerned with methods of seeing the familiar in a new way. Many of his works are in private collections and museums around this country and in Europe.
Rubington, born in New Haven, was divorced and is survived by two daughters and a son in France, and a brother, Earl, of Wellesly, Mass.