Listee Features — Art

Phyllis Packard


From the time Phyllis Whitcomb Packard was young, she dreamed of a career in the arts. She worked hard to make that dream a reality, and eventually became a fiber arts instructor at the University of South Dakota. With her foot in the door, Ms. Packard wasted no time in proving her aptitude in the field. She quickly advanced to positions in the Art Department at Yankton College and Worthington Community College, art consultant with the South Dakota Arts Council and the National Endowment for the Arts, originator and manager of prison industry Tapestry Weaving of Black Sheep Weavers, and executive director of the Vermillion Area Arts Council. She has also participated in more than 75 invitational shows thus far.

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Maili Malvre


An adept oil and watercolor painter who exhibits locally and at her church, Maili Malvre has been a freelance artist based out of Danville, California, since 1996. Earlier in her career, she served as an English teacher within the Pleasanton Unified School District from 1970 to 1996. Prior to the start of her career, she used to work in a department stores and trained young girls in sales and self-development, who served as an inspiration toward her desire to teach. She is most proud of being able to reach some very difficult students. She was able to reach them and teach them for a whole year, thus altering their lives. In addition to this tenure, Ms. Malvre served on the

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Ruth Brennan


Not wanting to stay in education for the entire duration of her career, Ruth A. Brennan most recently served as an arts columnist for the Rapid City Journal for one decade, previously serving the journal as an arts-staff writer from 1968 to 1983. She began her career teaching at Edison Junior High School in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, in 1954, remaining in this position for one year before becoming a registrar/veterans adviser at the University of Colorado Denver extension from 1955 to 1956. In addition to this tenure, Ms. Brennan served on the board of the South Dakota Arts Council from 1988 to 2011, for which she secured funding and programming, and as an arts consultant in planning, building and

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Nancy Conrad


Never doubting her career choices, Nancy R. Conrad became involved in her profession after winning a full scholarship to the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH) in the second grade. From that point on, she followed through with art until high school. A practiced artist, Ms. Conrad was a digital photography workshop instructor and oil painting workshop instructor at the Mountain Brook School Historical Foundation in Alabama in 2003 and 2004, respectively. Additionally, Ms. Conrad served as an art teacher at MFAH and the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, as well as a volunteer art consultant within the Spring Branch Independent School District in Hedwig Village, Texas, and private studio art teacher. When Ms. Conrad started out, her kids were very

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A practiced art critic for many years, Anne R. Fabbri began her professional career as an art lecturer at Villanova University in Pennsylvania in 1971, remaining in this role for two years before transferring to Drexel University in Philadelphia from 1974 to 1976. She then began critiquing art for The Drummer from 1976 and 1979, whom she also served as an art editor, and for The Bulletin from 1978 to 1980. Following this, she directed the Alfred O. Deshong Museum of Widener University in Chester, Pennsylvania, from 1980 to 1982, the Noyes Museum in Oceanville, New Jersey, from 1982 to 1991 and the Paley Design Center of Philadelphia University, now merged with Thomas Jefferson University, from 1991 to 2001. Continuing

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Helen Fioratti


Particularly interested in French and Italian furniture of the 18th century and Renaissance furniture, Helen Costantino Fioratti was inspired by her mother Ruth, who was the first female fine arts dealer of antiques in the United States. Because of this, she was bought up with antiques all around her. Ms. Fioratti had her first solo show when she was six or seven years old with a clay sculpture exhibit in the lobby of Hunter College Elementary School. Today, she serves as the president of noted art gallery, L’Antiquaire and the Connoisseur, Inc., in New York since 1988. She has also done interior design for the Royal Family of Kuwait, decorating multiple homes for them during the invasion of their country.

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Shirley Klein-Kleppe


Coming from a very supportive family, Shirley R. Klein-Kleppe has flourished as an artist. She has fond memories of her mother taking her to the craft store to get supplies, and of her parents teaching her to appreciate art. This inspired Ms. Klein-Kleppe to pursue her passion professionally. She earned a Bachelor of Science in art and biology education from the University of Central Missouri in 1967, and became an art teacher in the Benton County R-1 School District that same year. Her aptitude for the field led her to advance to roles like art teacher in the Turner Unified School District, graphic designer for the Menorah Medical Center, freelance graphic designer and illustrator, and advertising director of Gorges Wholesale

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When Lowery Stokes Sims was young, she became very interested in studio art. She was always drawing, and she honed her skills enough that she won the Catholic Youth Organization First Prize as a freshman in high school. When it came time to choose a college major, Dr. Sims decided on art history because it combined her love of the visual arts, history, and writing. Initially, she thought she would get a doctorate and teach, but as she was graduating, she was recruited by the Brooklyn Museum to work in their education department on a special project, taking donated art from the late, great Merton D. Simpson. This sparked an interest in museum education that she spent the rest of

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Renowned for her ability to create innovative artistic opportunities, Shelley Joy has thrived as an artist and performer. As a fine artist, Ms. Joy focuses on creating oil paintings to sell and display in galleries around the world. She has notably been an exhibitor at Museo de San Miguel de Allende in Mexico, the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Toyamaya Museum in Japan, and the New Atrium Museum of the Louvre in France, among many others. On the performance side of the spectrum, Shelley Joy prefers to collaborate with accomplished musicians, singers and actors to create events where people can come and learn something. She specializes in theatrical art. Additionally, she has written songs and poetry. To

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Coming from a family long involved in the fashion industry, Gloria D’Angelo Ingrao felt a strong desire to keep the legacy alive. Her grandfather was the first to join the world of fashion, when a men’s coat he designed won a competition in Paris in the late 1800s. Her father then took up the trade, opening a suits and coats company, D’Angelo’s, in the early 1900s. Ms. Ingrao joined her father’s business as an administrator in 1975 and fell in love with the work. She had been brought up to be creative, so fashion was a perfect fit. She advanced to become the president of D’Angelo’s Originals Ltd. in 1978. Then, in 1981, Ms. Ingrao decided to branch out. She

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