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Author Topic: Rumph at the Renaissance Pleasure Faire 1969  (Read 5891 times)
OldHippie
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« on: November 18, 2009, 04:18:07 PM »

Hello Rumphists
Had no idea this site even existed!
This is an account of meeting Jim Rumph at the RPF in LA 1969.
I was working as part of the roaming band of zanies putting on improvisational theatre "events" such as the Court Of The Dusty Footed and other shenanigans. Throughout the week I  passed by Jim Rumph's tent/bazaar and admired his work. Day by day,  pieces disappeared. On the last day, I got paid, raced over to Rumph to see if I could buy the spectacular "Wizard Ponders The Frog Problem" (know that probably isn't the actual title, but that is the scene...the Wizard is consulting an immense book, pondering which spell will release the prince in the frog while the princess languishes, the Wizard's assembled odd court look puzzled and sad. The whole drama takes place on a circle resembling King Solomon's Ring) Unfortunately, Rumph told me another RPF worker had already put a deposit on the piece, but anything else was available and since it was the last day, he'd knock off 25%. I chose a piece I had admired all week...a young girl cuddling with a reptilian no-good on her lap. My piece is much smaller than the Wizard work but has the same condensed drama and sense of something untoward about to happen. The detail is absolutely wonderful.  The girl's eyes and toothy grin tell the story!
The piece was marked (still is, in faded magic marker on the underside) $155- I paid Rumph the bulk of my weeks earning and have enjoyed this marvelous creation for 40 years. 69 RUMPH is incised into the girl's skirt on the side of the piece.
I was deeply saddened to hear of his death from a friend, a dealer in "smalls" several years ago. She also told me there was a whole subculture of Rumph enthusiasts...she had bought and sold several Rumph pieces over the years, primarily the mugs. She had a couple in her inventory at that time. I wish I had bought them from her! So I have only the one Rumph, but it is a treasure!
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jhwdesigns
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« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2009, 12:24:30 PM »

Wow! Sounds like you have a nice original piece there. You should post a few pictures to the photo section. I'm sure others would be interested. I used to attend the RF back in the day and Jim's stand was always a regular stop. Didn't have much money back then but picked up a little something every time. The piece you missed out on sounds similar to the "Wizard hexing a frog" that somebody else posted recently. Just FYI there's always a good selection of Rumph available on ebay, especially the more commercial pieces, if you wanted to add a few to your collection. Regards, JW
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