Normile, Helen Pullen,(nee Redel), age 77, passed away March 11, 2016 at Stella Maris. Predeceased by husband Richard J. Normile, Jr. & brother Milford Redel. Survived by loving son, Anthony Alexander Pullen, an aunt, Cecilia DeGraves, sister-in-law, Nadia Redel & numerous cousins, nieces and nephews. Her devotion to family, friends, students and the art culture will be missed. Memorial services will be at Stella Maris, 2300 Dulaney Valley Rd, Timonium, Monday, March 21 at 12:15 pm. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Kathy Deane c/o Stella Maris.
Both an educator and an artist, Helen, a long-time Towson resident, was born in Baltimore and attended The Institute of Notre Dame for 12 years, graduating in 1956. She went on to study art and fashion design at the Maryland Institute of Art, later moving to New York where she pursued a career as a fashion designer and pattern making for a large clothier. After spending several years in Germany as a student, she then returned to earn a Masters Degree at Towson State University. She continued her post-graduate studies at Towson, and became a member of the faculty from 1969-1999. While teaching ""Art in the Culture"" she introduced thousands of students to the visual arts using a unique teaching philosophy based on the premises that students would be inspired to learn by seeing original works of art in museum collections and by seeing architectural styles while visiting actual buildings. When teaching, Helen introduced topics in a way which was relative to the student's experiences and interests. The ""Semester in Italy"" program at Towson grew under her direction from a one-semester residency based primarily in Florence to include activities such as witnessing the Carnival in Venice and experiencing other aspects of Italian culture. Students loved the diverse experiences she exposed them to, from ""crashing a church mass that was in progress so she could show them a particular artwork,"" to experiencing wonderful restaurants and trattorias in offbeat Italian locations. As an artist, Helen created lyrical and subtle watercolor paintings of the shimmering landscapes of Venice and bird's eye views of Florence. The ultimate synthesis of her keen historical knowledge of art and her skill as an artist produced two remarkable works: The magnificently designed stained glass windows at the Church of the Nativity in Timonium, Md. And she was the illustrator for A Handbook of Costume Drawing, a collaborative effort published in 1992 by Georgia O'Daniel Baker.
Published in Baltimore Sun on Mar. 17, 2016