Artist Nancy Philo has a long and varied career in the arts.
Her formal art studies began at age 10 when she attended Saturday classes at the Detroit Institute of Arts. As a high school honor student, she was enrolled in the science and arts program at Detroit's famed exam school, Cass Tech, which was at that time ranked second in the nation for academics. Formal painting and printmaking training continued at Wayne State University and College of New Rochelle. Nancy left college for a couple of years to move to New York City to work as an antiwar activist, illustrating and reporting for 2 national pacifist magazines.
Later Nancy moved back to Detroit and exhibited professionally while she worked in the hotel and restaurant industry. During her lengthy career at Detroit's Pontchartrain Hotel, she met many top music performers, actors, writers and athletes. She worked training service staff at several high-end restaurants in the greater Motor City area.
Exhibiting her creations at summer art fairs throughout Michigan helped sharpen her sales skills and offered exposure to a diverse clientele.
A move to Boston in the late 1970's led to a career in education with the Mass Prison Arts Project, and to several one person shows in Cambridge and Boston, where Philo continued studying with classes at the Harvard Extension( adult night program.)
Nancy married, gave birth to identical twin daughters, and freelanced as an illustrator while she continued to exhibit her paintings.
The artist returned to college to get her Master's from Lesley in Cambridge, and taught as Department Head at 2 schools in Lawrence, Massachusetts and later in Amesbury, Massachusetts, where she designed an innovative summer program for children- a summer camp at a 40 acre farm with what became a model program for immersion into visual and performing arts. The camp ran for many years and saw hundreds of children pass through, including one student who flew in from San Francisco each summer to stay with area grandparents and attend the art camp!
Nancy ended her teaching career to open a large fine art gallery in downtown Newburyport. In addition to holding juried shows and representing high level, locally and nationally known painters, sculptors and jewelers in her space she had the privilege of setting multiple upcoming Boston and Northshore artists on a path to success and recognition.
Nancy was active in many associations and served on the Amesbury Cultural Council. She continued her studies attending several workshops in Gloucester and Rockport, participating in frequent plein air painting events.
A trip to New Mexico inspired Nancy to organize plein air painting trips for her students to the Southwest. She fell in love with the landscape in the Southwest and began to stay longer. Much like Georgia O'Keeffe, a painter Nancy admired and had loved since childhood, she summered in Lake George every year. Her love of the big sky and light in New Mexico led to the closing of her Massachusetts gallery and accepting a painting residency in New Mexico. When her 3 daughters left for college and became independent Nancy relocated to New Mexico permanently working on Canyon Road and exhibiting at Mariposa Gallery, later becoming Director at the S. R. Brennen Gallery in Santa Fe, with branches in Palm Desert and Scottsdale.
Following her parent’s death, Nancy became a permanent resident in New York. Although Glens Falls was where both sides of her family had lived for several generations, Nancy had only been a visitor until she purchased her home in 2013.
Philo is currently a member of LARAC, and Saratoga Arts, and works as an interior designer and color consultant. She also enjoys teaching and creating portraits of people's homes on commission. Drawing on her experience gained from numerous years as a gallery consultant, owner and director, Nancy has become an expert at curating and hanging shows.
Her love of her 3 talented daughters and their spouses, animals, nature and travels has led to a life that is constantly interesting and joyful.