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Vivian will be missed

William Parker

CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
It is with a great deal of sorrow, that I wanted the industry to know that Vivian died about an hour ago. She has fought a long and valient battle against cancer.
The obituary reads as follows:

Vivian Carli Kistler passed away on January 6, 2010 in Akron, Ohio.

Vivian was born in Niagara Falls, New York, on January 4, 1945 to C. Isabella Cutini Carli and James Carli. She attended private schools in Niagara Falls, NY and Niagara Falls, Canada. After she graduated with an Art degree from The University of Buffalo, she earned her teaching certificate and taught second grade at Prince of Peace. Vivian then married Richard Kistler and moved to Akron, Ohio where she founded Kistler Art Supply & Framing. Vivian was a strong advocate for women’s rights and fought local Title IX battles. She founded the Akron Arts Expo at Hardesty Park as a venue for college artists to showcase their art. Vivian was a former president of the Fairlawn Chamber of Commerce and taught business classes at The University of Akron.

Vivian began teaching traveling seminars on picture framing and business which took her all over the world. Vivian was a well-known speaker and instructor for the picture framing industry and was known for her entertaining and informative presentations. Vivian founded Columba Publishing in 1984 and produced the Library of Professional Picture Framing in addition to authoring over 20 more books and hosting over 15 videos. Over one million of Vivian’s books and videos have been sold. Vivian wrote articles for Picture Framing Magazine (PFM), Art World News, Profile Magazine and DECOR Magazine. She was also a former Senior Chairholder for the Color Marketing Group. Vivian’s work with the Professional Picture Framers Association included service at both the local and national levels. She created and developed National Picture Framing Month to promote public awareness of the craft.

Vivian held professional certifications of Master Professional Picture Framer (MCPF) from the Professional Picture Framers Association, and Guild Commended Framer with Honors (GCF), from the Fine Art Trade Guild in the United Kingdom.

Vivian was awarded the PFM Lifetime Achievement Award and the PMA (Photo Marketing Association) Distinguished Service Award. In 2010 the Professional Picture Framers Association honored Vivian by renaming their prestigious award to The Vivian Kistler Lifetime Achievement Award. Vivian was awarded the PPFA Award For Innovation in 1999, and the Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009.

Vivian was preceded in death by her mother, Isabella Cutini Carli, father, James Carli, and sister Donna Carli Strasburg. She is survived by daughters Carli (Kevin) Miller and Laine (Joe) Vereecken, grandchildren Vivian, Laine, Isabelle, and Vincent, brother Jim (Betty) Carli, and former husband Richard Kistler.

Memorials may be made to Our Lady of the Elms School.

William Parker MCPF GCF
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Keith L Hewitt

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
What a great loss to our industry. I have known Vivian for many years and had the pleasure of her company at numerous overseas framing shows.
I always have her excellent Year Planner in my wallet and hope that Columba will continue to make it available for years to come.

We have lost a star, whose jovial manner, enthusiasm, and wealth of knowledge will be sadly missed by many framers in many countries.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
I did not know her, but god bless.

Kristin Brashares

Grumbler in Training
The entire DECOR staff is very sorry to hear this news. Vivian wrote for the magazine from 1978 to 2005, and we will be honoring her legacy to the custom framing industry in the February issue. We will also be posting some of her early articles to DECOR's website - www.decormagazine.com - in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, we have set up a special link on DECOR's website for the posting of condolences and memories.

Here is the link: http://decormagazine.com/2010/01/06/decor-honors-her-extensive-contributions-to-custom-framing/


Kristin Stefek Brashares


PFG, Picture Framing God
This is a sad loss for her family and for our industry. Vivian not only gave expert advice, but she delivered it in her own style, with a sense of humor. She certainly had charisma. As experts in our industry age, it is good to see some younger faces on the teaching roster this year. Let's hope our very small industry contines to produce young leaders to take the helm as time goes on.

danny boy

PFG, Picture Framing God
Wow. Vivian was such a remarkable person. Her inspiration and direction have been felt by all and will truly be missed by many. This is such a hard thing. I was hoping to bump into her again this month. I will miss Vivian.


CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Terrible news about a terrific person who has done so much for the industry. Looking back I am glad I was able to take some of her classes at the last Atlanta show in 2008, and am grateful for her help and enthusiasm when my start-up was in the planning phase. Her advice, teachings and of course, Columba Publishing have done so much to advance the practice and business of picture framing over the past 25 years. Thank you Vivian, you will be missed...

Paul Cascio

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
I've known Vivian for many years. She was a great friend, kindred spirit and confidant. I will miss her terribly, and so will our industry.

Through her books and videos, as well as her classes, she has touched us all, and helped further the knowledge and success of almost everyone in the industry.

My heartfelt condolences go out to Carli, Lane and her grandchildren who she so dearly loved. I'm absolutely certain there is a special corner in heaven that has been reserved for Vivian Kistler.

I love you Viv. Rest in peace.


PFG, Picture Framing God
Just heard the sad news about Vivian's passing from Robo. What a shock!!!

Although I never had the privilege of meeting Vivian, I am so grateful for all the passion, time and dedication she gave - particularly through her books - to the education of framers the world over in how to create top class work.

Thank you, Vivian, for both the technical and business education that you passed on to so many novice framers such as myself. I would not be the framer I am without all that I learned from you.

Peace and joy to you for your onward journey... you will always be a fondly remembered and greatly appreciated legend in this industry.

My sincere condolences to Vivian's family and all her loved ones.


MGF, Master Grumble Framer
She has has passed her knowledge on to many framers over the years which will keep her alive in our hearts and our minds for generations to come. God Bless and rest in peace Vivian.


PFG, Picture Framing God
I am terribly sad to hear of this. Since I started framing I have devoured every one of her articles through the years, and she is one of the people who inspired me to become the best framer I could.

She will be missed by all, and this industry will be a little poorer without her.

Bless you, Vivian.

Jared Davis CPF GCF

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
This is sad, sad news....

No one changed our industry more, for the better, than Vivian Kistler....

She will be missed by many all around the globe, as she was able to help so many with her undying devotion and passion to our industry.

I will never forget her...


Jeff Rodier

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
God Bless You Vivian we will miss you. Our prayers are with her family.

Julie Walsh

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Such sad, sad news. Vivian gave some seminars and judged the framing competion at Omega Mouldings 2008 open house here in Canada. She was a delight to meet and enthusiastically shared her knowledge with the audience.

She will live on through her extensive library of framing books.

RIP Vivian.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
My thoughts and prayers go out to Vivian's family. I had no idea she was ill (perhaps I missed previous threads on her health), so reading this thread about her death came as a shock. Although I never met Vivian, I have a good collection of her framing books and instructional DVDs, all of which have been a great source of framing information.

She will definitely be missed. May she rest in peace...


<span style="color: red"><b><i>Charter Member</i><
What a shock. I had no idea she was that ill. My heart goes out to her familiy. She was an industry giant and will surely be missed.


PFG, Picture Framing God
Very sad news. I've only been in this business a few years, but I can't think of a single time I've read one of her articles and didn't come away with something useful. And her books, particularly on handling needlework, have been indispensable to me.

My condolences to her family and friends.

Randy Jordan

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
My condolences go out to Vivian's family and friends. The framing profession has lost a true icon in her. Rest in Peace Vivian. Randy Jordan


MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Not sure I would have passed my CPF test with out her calming words moments before I sat down to take it two years ago. I passed her in the ladies room while panicing over a study question and I asked her to please tell me the answer because my mind was blank and I was aure it would be on the test. She told me the answer but more importantly she told me to breath and calm down!

Great lady to have a moment for a lunitic stranger in the loo!

RIP Vivian! You will be remembered!

Barb Pelton

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Such sad news. I have a few very good memories with Vivian and really would have liked to have had the chance to accumulate more of those memories. She was a wonderful person to share this crazy passion for framing with. I'll miss her, but I'm certainly glad to have gotten to know her. I was just thinking of her yesterday and about how much style the woman possesses. So sorry to hear she's passed away from us so soon. She'll be missed.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Vivian will be truly missed by many people in our industry. She's been coming to Australia to teach for many, many years and has had a great impact here.
I spoke with her in Sydney at the PPFA convention last June and she was her usual cheerful self as she posed cheekily for my camera!

My thoughts and prayers go to her family and friends.

No doubt the majority of Grumblers and a huge number of people in this industry in many countries were her friends!

Amy McCray

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
I was priveleged to attend several of her courses. Her passing is a huge loss but I hope she is now able to rest in peace.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
I met Vivian twice. The second time was in Peninsula, Ohio last spring, at an Ohio PPFA workshop. She was a bundle of energy. I knew she was not feeling well but didn't realize how ill she was.

Thank you Vivian for all the knowledge you've imparted to the framing industry. Your legacy will live on, and you'll be missed.

John Ranes II CPF GCF

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Our Matriarch is gone...


Thank you for the phone call - although I knew that Vivian was battling cancer for the past few years, she was doing so well and always displayed such strength that I thought she would hang on forever!

While we were teaching together in Australia 4 years ago, Vivian first revealed her battle with cancer when she accidently dislodged her hairpiece during a private conversation, and without missing a beat, she said, "Oh, you noticed that?" - Her humor was an important element that kept her real, while her message was always sincere and immensely valid - Vivian was truly dedicated to sharing what she knew and continued to learn.

I have great respect for this wonderful lady, educator and friend - Goodbye Vivian.


Terry Scidmore CPF

MGF, Master Grumble Framer
I'll sure miss The Queen Of Picture Framing.

Ever witty, charming, vital, intelligent, insightful, caring, vivacious, giving - all of those descriptive terms that define the best we can be.

My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends as Vivian starts making Heaven a more beautiful, organized, and lively place.

Hail, Queen Vivian - and thank you. You will be missed by so many.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
This is truly sad news. Even though we operated only about 45 minutes apart for years I only had the opportunity to meet her last January and she was pure class. She certainly left her mark and many framers are more proficent and more practical because of her.

The Wavy Framer

SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Oh, what terrible, terrible news! So very sad. Vivian is such an inspiration!

I met her only once at Frame-O-Rama several years ago. She inspired me enough to want to be just like her, a goal completely unattainable as she is one of a kind.

May her spirit be present in every shop and her family know peace as she frames for The Big Guy behind the pearly gates.


PFG, Picture Framing God
I remember a lot of great things about Vivian, but it is funny what sticks in the mind. I know some of you were there when Vivian spoke to the luncheon group at PPFA/PMA. She was making fun of the bad dye job on her hair! She turned it into a lesson in convenience for all of us: She went to the late night hairdresser at/near her hotel because they were open and convenient for her. She ended up with black hair and had us all in stitches while she managed to drive her point home--be open when it is convenient for your customers. Not only were her framing classes and books educational, she was also a great marketer and we would do well to remember her lessons.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
My condolences to those who are related & knew her well!
What a truly inspirational lady. As a young framer 10 years ago I attended my first trade show and went to my first seminar held by Vivian. She was so passionate about our industry. Out of all the notes I have kept over the years, I still have all of Vivians. Seeing her was always a highlight for me. Although I didn't know her at all, I will certainly miss her passion, enthusiasm and encouragement. I'm sorry you are gone too soon. Jodie


My sincere condolences to her family. I was always looking forward to see her here in Sydney during the Framing Show.


MGF, Master Grumble Framer
Certainly a shock and a loss of a wonderful instructor and pioneer of the framing industry. Our prayers go out to her family and friends. We will miss her clever mind and spirit. Exactly how many handbooks did she write for us framers? I have at least half a dozen, some of which I still reference occassionally.


Jeannie Franklin CPF

CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

I am very sad to hear of Vivian's passing. Early in my 35 years in business, this lady was the reason I got into the framing business the right way. She truly was my mentor and as the years past, I kept up with all she had to offer. Our industry will truly miss her. My thoughts and prayers are with her family.


PFG, Picture Framing God
I well remember the first class I took from Vivian. It was about 30 years ago, probably Baltimore PPFA convention 1979ish.

Vivian had us all in stitches then and in every class I ever took from her. She really knew how to teach with a laugh, and I can remember so many tidbits simply because she drove the point home with humor.

My favorite? "We are framers. We are not magicians!"

RIP, dear friend. You will truly be missed.


CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Vivian encompassed everything good about this industry. Her generosity, good nature, fun spirit, helpful attitude, creativity... I could go on and on. She will be missed. My prayers to her family.


PFG, Picture Framing God
My deepest sympathies to her family and friends...

couture's gallery

PFG, Picture Framing God
Vivian was not only an industry Icon, but a very wonderful person....visited with her several times, took lots of her classes, and she actually helped us personally back in the early 90's on advising us about our business.....what a loss to all of us...she is in a very special place now, God bless.

Jim Miller

SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
Vivian's passing leaves a void in our industry world-wide. Her positive impact on picture framing is very much appreciated by the thousands of framers who have attended her classes, studied her many books, and benefitted from her sage advice during her years as a teacher, writer, and publisher.

Like so many others, I considered Vivian to be a good friend. She was a shining star who enlightened everyone around her.


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Very sad.

Her articles always had points that helped.

She will be missed.



SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God
I took a seminar of hers back in the eighties - right here in Buffalo - in the conference room of the long-gone Howard Johnson's. It was a wonderful seminar and I always loved her articles and books.

Thanks for everything Vivian and enjoy a well-deserved rest before you start framing in Heaven!


MGF, Master Grumble Framer
A sad day for all the framers and a great loss for the framing industry...you will be missed, MASTER!

Rob Markoff

PFG, Picture Framing God
With the upcoming WCAF show, and its plethora of education it is hard to remember a time when finding someone willing to teach or a venue for learning was as available.

Paul Frederick wrote the first books and Vivian started the first classes - all under the auspices of DECOR magazine. Vivian was responsible for bringing education to the trade shows and the industry is a much better place as a result.

I remember when I first wanted to start teaching at the Learning Centers at the ABC shows. I told her what I wanted to do and received Vivian's "blessing" and an intro to the staff of DECOR. If it weren't for her, I never would have been able to teach or write for DECOR and I am forever grateful. She was also very supportive of Barbara's efforts in writing her new book and we had hoped that it would have become a part of the Kistler library - but Vivian was not well enough to take on a new project.

Being on the "circuit" meant being with Vivian at least once, more often two or three times a year. She was down to earth, "real", approachable, friendly and funny. The educator's lounge won't be the same without her "How ya' doin' kiddo?" greeting.

While I knew the day was coming, the reality is just setting in. Thank you Vivian.

The art and framing industry is better because of you.


CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
It is such horrible news that she has passed away. With all the great things she has done for this industry and for people alike. I had the pleasure of being in several of her classes at the art and framing shows and she was a wonderful teacher and person. She will be missed.
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