Good-bye to a WAAM member

The rich and productive life of Harriet E.

Phillips has come to an end. She is survived by her

two loving children, Melanie Miller and Russell

Scott Miller. She was also greatly admired by her

son-in-law, Mitchell Gattis, and daughter-in-law,

Kathleen Chapman.

Born in the Bronx in 1930, Harriet was the

only child of Florence Josephine and John Wilson

Phillips. She attended Hunter College, graduating

in 1951. After training at the Art Students’ League
under Frank J. Reilly, Harriet began her career as a medical illustrator in the
late 1950s. In addition to working at Columbia Presbyterian Medical
Center, Harriet’s freelance illustrations appeared in such trade publications
as Contemporary Surgery, Geriatrics and Primary Care & Cancer.

Always curious, Harriet studied several different artistic media
throughout her lifetime. Encouraged by her husband of 27 years, sculptor
Donald R. Miller, she took classes at the Center for Book Arts in NYC and
the Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, NY. In the 1980s, Harriet
became interested in bookmaking and silkscreen printing, producing many
works of art in these two styles. More recently, she created mixed-media
collages and landscape paintings, pieces which often reflected her passion
for the animal world and nature conservancy.

After Don’s death in 1989, Harriet became more involved in the
Orange County, NY arts community. She developed many close friendships
with area artists, and was constantly engaged with the activities of her
colleagues. Maintaining a connection with her native New York was equally
important, and she stayed active in two NY-based arts groups through the
end of her life. After years of being associated with the Society of Animal
Artists through her husband, Harriet became a member in her own right,
and served on the Board for many years. She was also a vital member of
the National Association of Women Artists, and became instrumental in
publishing their Spring/Fall newsletter.

Harriet Phillips died on March 31, 2010. A night owl to the end, she
took her last breath around 11:30 p.m., with her daughter at her side.

A memorial service to celebrate her life will be scheduled in the near
future, and donations can be made in her name to the National Association

Categories: Uncategorized


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