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Rudolf Krepinsky, one of the most well-respected and longstanding members of the international ceramic tile community, passed away on September 22, 2009. The founder of Ceramica Antigua, a manufacturer of hand-crafted, hand-painted decorative tile products located in Araras, Brazil, Krepinsky was a firm believer that tile was indeed art. He backed up his belief by producing tile materials at his “low tech” Araras factories, which rivaled those of the most venerated European producers in both quality and style. Additionally, under his direction, Ceramica Antigua provided company workers, as well as other members of the local community, with lodging, education, health care and many other opportunities.
“The ceramic tile world has lost a great friend,” said Edson Gaidzinski, Jr., CEO of Eliane Ceramic Tiles and currently president of Anfacer, the association of Brazilian tile manufacturers. “Rudy Krepinsky was more than just a long-time leader within our industry worldwide. He was a compassionate employer, a wonderful family man and someone I’ve known and respected my entire life. His legacy will proliferate as Ceramica Antigua products continue their tradition of quality, innovation and maintain Mr. Krepinsky’s firm conviction that tile was indeed art.”
Of Krepinsky’s many accomplishments, a major one was establishing Ceramic Tile Trends (CTT) in the U.S. Managed for the last 15 years by his daughter, Suzy Krepinsky, CTT pioneered the process of importing small format ceramic tiles and decorative trim pieces from Brazil and making them available stateside. Still in strong demand, many of these products are hand-painted by artists who live on the Ceramica Antigua campus in Araras.
He is survived by his wife, Marcela Krepinsky; two daughters, Suzy Krepinsky and Cynthia Rodrigues; and three grandchildren.