KATHLEEN OTLEY - Wall Sculptures and Encaustic Paintings
One of the gallery's most successful artists works in two kinds of mixed-media. Whidbey Islander Kathleen Otley calls her work “contemporary primitive,” combining ancient forms and symbols with a modern, nature-infused sensibility.
Starting as a weaver nearly forty years ago, Kathleen soon found her interests broadening as she discovered willow cane for basketmaking and began incorporating the willow into woven tapestries she calls Shields and Bundle Banners.
To createher willow wall sculptures, she uses farmed willow branches, which she peels and dyes before joining them with a variety of colorful ropes, metals, leather and her own hand-spun wool.
Please scroll down to see more of Kathleen's beautiful willow wall sculpture.
Several years ago Kathleen began exploring encaustic painting in addition to her willow work and found herself fascinated by this ancient technique that is undergoing a revival in popularity.
For her prolific series of bird-imagery encaustics, she uses wax, resin and pigment, which is applied in layers on board and heated to bond each successive step. With her unique layering process, Otley achieves an ancient-looking surface that provides a backdrop for the artist’s thoughtful use of images of birds, trees, flowers and fragments from ancient aged parchments of Japanese folk tales. calligraphy scrolls and symbols.
A finished encaustic piece may include up to fourteen layers.
Kathleen's work ranges in size from small 4 x 4" bird pieces to larger pieces 18 x 18", as well as rectangular work from 4 x 6" and up. Most are painted on cradled painting panels 1.5" deep, sometimes Otley uses high fired ceramic. Some pieces have a distinctly Asian esthetic, while others focus on avian and horticultural imagery.
Prices range from $69 - $1,200, with a wide variety of work under $250.
To purchase or inquire about Kathleen's currently available work,
please contact the gallery at 800/858-5063.
An attractive way of displaying these small gems is by making arrangements of three, five, or more to make a fresh and lively grouping. Combinations of a larger piece with several smaller ones work great as well. The gallery is happy to assist you in finding the perfect grouping.