John G. Figura

The Rome School community is deeply saddened by the recent passing of long-time art professor John Figura on Wednesday, January 6. John began teaching at Catholic University in 1988 and became a full-time Clinical Assistant Professor in 1997. Throughout his time in the Art Department he brought his love of painting into the classroom and inspired countless art students. In 2019, John was honored by Catholic University with the Award for Overall Teaching Excellence. He also acted as the Salve Regina Art Gallery director, organizing dozens of public art exhibitions over the years. These shows greatly enhanced the creative community at Catholic University and introduced students to a myriad of internationally recognized artists. 

He was a tremendous figure in the Art Department and his passing is a great sadness for so many at the University and in the Washington D.C. art community.

John's colleagues in the Art Department wrote the following beautiful words about him: John was many things — a gifted artist, a generous and inspiring mentor, a curator with an unerring eye, a talented musician, a man of quiet wit and wisdom. To the faculty who taught alongside him, John was full of ideas, support, and camaraderie. To the many students he taught and nurtured, he was a source of vital support and creative confidence. And to the broader art community in the D.C, area, John was an integral member who played a vital role in invigorating the Washington arts scene as a fellow artist. He was in short, a deeply modest and often very quiet man with a talented hand, a generous heart, and a fender-bending rockabilly soul. He will be deeply missed.

The Funeral Mass for the repose of the soul of John Figura was held on Friday, January 22, 2021 at noon EST, on campus in St. Vincent de Paul Chapel. The Liturgy had limited in-person attendance and was live-streamed on the Catholic University of America’s Campus Ministry YouTube Channel. The full Funeral Mass can be viewed here.