About us

Ruth Levison Design is a family business; an art licensing and design development agency with a small group of diverse and talented artists.

Ruth started the company in 1992 out of a small office in her home in San Francisco with just a few artists. Peter came on board with technical expertise from his printing and production background which helped the business grow quickly. The industry wasn't very wired yet, but when Mark joined the company in 2002 he brought a digital business and creative background with him that is moving the business forward using technology. But still, what matters is the art and the people.

We work hard every day to find ways to bring great design to great products. We try to make the world a little bit more beautiful, one license at a time. Our family of artists lead design trends, they tell wonderful stories with their colors and brighten people's lives with their talents. They're truly a special group and we work hard for them. And they work hard too, developing their work for specific product needs and always coming up with the next beautiful thing.

 

Our licensing partners number over a hundred and manufacture a wide variety of products including tabletop, textiles, ornaments, wall décor, floor coverings, accessories, paper products and party goods. We have built long and strong relationships with them and they come back to us season after season. It's the relationships that are important. It's the art that shines.

For all inquiries we can be reached by phone or email. Don't hesitate to contact us.

Who we are

Ruth

Ruth Levison

Founding Partner

If you've ever spoken to Ruth, you'd quickly figure out that this long time resident of the San Francisco Bay Area might just have some New York roots. She's no shrinking violet and it has served her well in her long and successful career. Ruth, aka the name on the RLD door, was the creative force behind the Curtis Swann greeting card company. She was ever present at the gift and stationery shows for many years and knows everybody. When she and Peter sold the company, she was looking for her next big thing. A stint as a creative consultant with a major party goods manufacturer, where she sourced art and artists for their products, led her into the world of art licensing. Figuring the artists she had found could create work for countless other products, Ruth established Ruth Levison Design and has been one of the leading licensing agents since. Trends have come and gone and come back again and she has been on top of them all. Creativity, knowhow and chutzpah have gotten her to where she is today. Ruth has three children and seven grandchildren. We'll do her the courtesy of not mentioning their ages.

Peter

Peter Levison

Partner

Peter is old school. Peter is new school. His roots take him back to the days when publishers and manufacturers hired printing brokers to handle the management of their print production, but his Photoshop skills could get him a job at Adobe. He could proof a 4 color separation and handle a press check with the best of them or he can upload a 4 gig file to the FTP server. The first company he started, the printing brokerage Peter G. Levison Associates had a very successful run, but it was his second company, Curtis Swann, that really put him on the map in the industry. He knew everybody with a press, every rep in the country and how to mass produce beautiful things on paper. When he and Ruth sold the company in the early nineties the industry was changing and it was time for him to change as well. Ruth had been dabbling with this art licensing thing and all of a sudden, she had more work than she could handle. Peter started computerizing the business, tracking the royalties and organizing the art. RLD was off to the races. His love of design, development and business keeps him going strong. Coincidentally he has the exact same number of children and grandchildren as Ruth.

Mark

Mark Levison

Managing Partner

"Why don't you just come and help us with this today?" they said. Okay, Mark was the good son and helped his parents. "Hey, can we talk about creating a web site this week?" And then, "Do you want to come to this trade show? You like New York, right?" Before he knew it, Mark was enticed into the ever expanding world of Ruth Levison Design. Mark had always had a creative bent, having attended music school, studied art history and photography. Before RLD, Mark worked for a CD-ROM (remember those?) developer, in the creative department of a pioneering web development agency, and on building the easy to use financial web sites. He long had ambitions of starting his own business. Well, it hasn't worked out that way, but in getting sucked in to RLD, it's the next best thing. Mark has been working both out front and behind the scenes for the last 10 years or so (his start date is a bit vague), building the operational capacity of the company, setting direction for the future and extending the legacy of this company that provides beautiful art to the world. Sounds pretty good.