Nancy Willis lives in the Napa Valley and holds an M.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute. Through a series of paintings and works on paper, she explores themes of intimacy and social connection. With paint or printing ink, Willis uses an additive and subtractive process to translate how color, light and atmosphere instill meaning and evoke a sense of place. Her work was recently exhibited at the Berkeley Art Center and the StARTup Art Fairs in LA, Chicago and San Francisco.
Willis has created two large curatorial projects for the Napa Valley Museum. Discrepancy/living between war and peace coincided with the 10th anniversary of September 11th and featured 20 artists, and members from Pathway Home, a recovery program for veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. Her 2015 curatorial project NOURISH brought together over 25 artists, 9 chefs and a live stream from the kitchen of a three Michelin starred restaurant in France.
Willis teaches design at Culinary Institute of America and painting and printmaking at the Napa Valley College. Her entrepreneurial projects include Path of an Artist tours, leading artists to France and Sundance for annual painting workshops. Willis’ work resonates with hospitality and can be seen in the Archer Hotel’s permanent collection in Napa.
In 2018, Willis was awarded an ACNV Community Fund Grant for her project Conflict Zone, a collaborative printmaking project with Iraqi Yazidi women, men and children now living in Houston Texas.