"It’s with great distress and sorrow that we have to announce the death of James Rizzi. The world famous pop artist died peacefully in his sleep in his studio in SoHo, New York, the night after Christmas. His sudden and unexpected death comes as a shock to family, friends, and collectors alike.
James Rizzi became famous for the 3D paper sculptures he invented, the playful and childlike forms and bright colors of which were to become his artistic trademark. Thus he acquired a large international following across all age groups and classes. Another claim to fame came through the application of his distinctive style to a large variety of everyday objects – from Rizzi stamps to the Rizzi house, from Rizzi puzzles to the Rizzi jet plane, from Rizzi chinaware to Rizzi cars and trains. Throughout his life, Rizzi contributed to a number of charities, the wellbeing of children being particularly close to his heart. This is one of the reasons why a public school in Duisburg, Germany, bears his name since this year.
James Rizzi died in the city he was born in, New York, which influenced his life as well as his work greatly. He was in the middle of preparing for new projects when death struck him.
In James Rizzi the art world loses one of the last great pop artists, and we lose a good friend and a wonderful human being."
He was HUGE in Germany. All the German papers are reporting his death - even the lowest-common-denominator tabloid "Bild" - while the English-language media seems to be ignoring it.
The house he designed in Braunschweig, Germany: