Retrospectives of his work have been held in Paris (1983), Alcalá de Henares (1983), New York (1989), Melbourne (1993), Mannheim-Heidelberg (2003), Rotterdam (2004), Buenos Aires (2004), Geneva (2005), Rome (2007), Valdivia (2008), Buenos Aires (2009) and Santiago de Chile (2011). Following his death, tributes were paid to Ruiz in festivals in Rotterdam (January 2012), Toulouse (March 2012), New York (May 2012) and Paris (July 2012).
Member of the jury at the Cannes Film Festival in 2002.
Became co-director of the Maison de la Culture in Le Havre (August 1985).
Awarded the title of Docteur Honoris Causa by the Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon (2005), Professorship by the University of Aberdeen (2007) and Doctor Honoris Causa by the Universidad de Valparaíso (2011).
Received several honours in his native Chile, including the National Prize of Arts of the Representation and Audiovisual (1997) and the Art Critics Circle’s Bicentennial Award for cinema (2010), sharing the latter with Valeria Sarmiento.
Awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship (for Creative Arts-Film) in 1983.
He was born in Puerto Montt, Chile and raised in Valparaiso, Chile where his father was a merchant marine whom he sailed with whom on his summer vacations around the world.
He studied law and theology at the University of Chile before he studied film especially with the university film club and experimental film. He spent a year at the film school by Fernando Birri in Santa Fe, Argentina where he worked as an editor on television news program in Chile and as a scriptwriter for a soap opera in Mexico produced by Televisa. He was employed by Chile Films, a state film agency.
He and his wife left Chile in 1973 after Allende’s overthrown government for Paris, France where he remained for the rest of his life.
He was appointed director of the House of Culture in Le Havre, France by Jack Lang, the French cultural minister.