Portrait by Donna Granata - 2008
Debra McKillop is a professional studio artist and teacher with a Masters in Art from CSU at Northridge; undergraduate work at UCLA and UCSB, Pasadena Art Center, and in Mexico.
Ms. McKillop has lived and worked in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, and in New York City. Debra currently teaches Studio Art at Ventura College (since 1986); from 2001-2005 at Santa Barbara City College. In 1995, she created a class in gallery and museum studies entitled Gallery
Technology and Management, which she taught at Ventura College for twelve years.
Mentored by curators Josine Ianco Starrels (1995-6) and William McEnroe, Ms. McKillop has 25 years of experience in independent curation. She was the Director/Curator of Ventura College Art Galleries (1995-98) and has juried art for numerous galleries, museums and Arts Commissions
throughout Southern California. Ms. McKillop has served as both Public Arts Commissioner and as
member of the Municipal Arts and Acquisitions Committee for the City of Ventura.
Ms. McKillop has exhibited her work throughout California, the US and in Europe. With over 200 group and solo exhibitions, her art has been widely collected, reviewed, and published in artist catalogs and books including IMAGERY: Art for Wineby Bob Nugent, foreword by Donald Kuspit.
Debra has received numerous scholarships, grants and awards, including The Pasadena Art Center College of Design (scholarship); Brooks Institute (partial scholarship); a VC Foundation Grant; art awards from the Bank of America and Hallmark (the KCAI Summer Scholarship); the Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum(CAF) exhibition award. Her art is included in the Benziger Family Winery Art Collection and the City of San Buenaventura Municipal Art Collection.
An avid traveler, Ms. McKillop has explored the arts throughout North America and Europe. While studying art through the University of Arizona in Guadalajara, her host was Diego Rivera’s granddaughter. Debra was an Artist-in-Residence at the Imagery Gallery in Glen Ellen, CA (2002) and in France (2001-2002).
Ms. McKillop participated in an NEA film project (The Making of The Last Supper Sculpture).
As Mr. Szukalski’s project director, she is featured in a segment titled The Source: Albert Szukalski Interview with Debra McKillop. She is the subject of two interviews by Focus on the Masters founder, Donna Granata - City Council Update: A Conversation with Debra McKillop (Caps TV, April 1999) and as FOTM Feature Artist (March 2005).
Debra McKillop's documentation took place in 2005 and was sponsored by Dick & Betsy Chess. The FOTM Archive contains extensive information about this artist. To learn more about Debra McKillop please visit: VenturaCollege.edu