About Artist Kathy Wise
Although Kathy Wise a city girl for most of her growing up years, she has always had a strong love for animals. When she was a teenager, her family moved to a rural area in the thumb area of Michigan. She fell in love with country living almost instantly. Kathy credits her mother, who is also an artist, for her interest in art. As a child, she busily sculpted animals out of soap and later wood while her mother painted landscapes and people.
High school and college art classes intensified her interest in art and sculpture. A ceramics class in college where she added sculpted clay animal figures to her pots led to the creation of many other animal sculptures. Students were soon asking Kathy to create animals for them. Kathy graduated with Magna Cum Laude with an Associates Degree in Commercial Art.
Kathy's first animals were sculpted from low-fire ceramic clay. She started selling her sculptures at art fairs and shows. She made every breed of dog and many popular animals, all one-of-a-king originals. She worked out of her parent's home, with her mother working along side of her painting the glazes on each figure. Immediately store owners were asking Kathy to sell her delightful animal characters to them. Soon she was supplying over 70 stores including the Mole Hole, a nation wide chain of collectible gift stores.
In 1983, Gene Freedman (then President of Enesco Corp.) first saw Kathy's work in a Seattle gift shop. This man who launched Precious Moments saw potential in Kathy's art and contacted her to start the first of her many lines in the giftware industry. She has gone on to design animal figures and giftware for many other companies including , Westland, United Design, and Encore Group. Over the years, Kathy has designed and sculpted over one thousand different items in over forty lines that have been sold worldwide.
In the early 90's, Kathy sculpted realistic wildlife figures which were cast in bronze. At Detroit's Center for the Creative Arts, she learned the entire bronze casting process and did many molds, waxes, pours, finish grinding and patinas herself. She has had her bronzes displayed in art galleries in Scottsdale AZ. and Michigan. Kathy has won awards with her Wildlife bronzes at several art shows including the International Blue Water Art Show. Kathy only accepts special commission work in Bronze at this time.
In her art career, Kathy has worked in both two and three dimensional media including clay, stone and wood. She has designed and carved a full size carousel rocking horse for her daughter. Kathy has done many wall hangings in wood and other materials. Having a background in Commercial Art has helped in her two dimensional design work. All photos, layouts and graphics on her web site, recent book and catalogs are designed by Kathy.
Kathy designed and created her first intarsia piece of intarsia in 2004. Go to How it Started to read more about her Intarsia Art.
Below are several of her Intarsia Art Murals.