Robert Rubyan

Rubyan made art since he drew spirals as a small boy in Lebanon, being gifted with a strong visual memory. Picnicked at the Great Stone in Baalbek with his relatives, studied the Roman mosaic in the courtyard of his grandparents residence in Tripoli. Visited the Hagia Sophia, the Whirling Dervishes museum & fished in the Bosphorus during his stay in Istanbul, Turkey, as a member of the first Armenian family to return after the Genocide of 1915. Immigrating to Philadelphia during the second grade, drew zooming intergalactic spaceships in school yard art competitions.

In ’60s Detroit, Michigan attended Monteith College, Wayne State University, was mentored by John Sinclair, counter culture maven & manager of the MC-5.

He helped found the Teamster’s Union local at Cook Paint & Varnish Company while employed as a paint chemist, worked the assembly line at the original Ford Model T plant in Highland Park, Michigan, tended bar at the Marquee Lounge, was a United Auto Workers Union member/fork lift driver at Cadillac, & participated in the UAW/General Motors strike of ’70. Did “lightshows” at rock concerts & bars rounded out his early work résumé.

Witnessed the Detroit riots of ’67, with the “Algiers Motel Incident” happening on same block of downtown as his family residence.

After earning a M.A. in Art History in ’72, became the Director’s Curatorial Assistant for pre-Columbian Art at the Detroit Institute of Arts.

Moving to New York in ’74, he joined the Society of Scribes (SOS). With Eleanor Winters organized the Brooklyn Museum SOS Calligraphy exhibit of 1978 & was elected President of the SOS in ’79.


Taught Multimedia presentation & animation at Fordham University in the Bronx & Pratt Institue in Brooklyn, Art History, Borough of Manhattan Community College. Adjunct Professor since ’93 at SUNY’s Fashion Institute of Technology in Manhattan, passing along his 30+ years of advertising experience as a freelance multimedia graphic designer & early adopter of the computer to the students of the Advertising & Marketing Communications Department.