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Artist Statement

Door County has an often forgotten side that resides in the northern peninsula and Mink River Estuary. My work is inspired by this lack of exposure and seeks to illustrate the beauty of the area.

My rambles take me deep into the forest, along the quiet shores and bluffs. I am awed by the gift of nature and feel there are unseen forces under the surface. My paintings deepen my relationship to the magic that is inherent in nature.

I am primarily focused on two mediums, mixed media and encaustic, because they allow to me express my subjects in a more dimensional way. My mixed media pieces incorporate leather stretched over a wood panel as opposed to a traditional canvas.  This allows me to manipulate the surface by forming, carving and embedding stones or other elements. The natural properties of leather give a unique appearance when painted. My encaustic pieces use hot wax and water-soluble encaustic paints to create a textured surface with fine details.  Both mediums pay homage to the sensory experience of nature.
My compositions are more illusionistic than strictly realistic but they are filled with details. An example is “Artifact” a 30” x 40” mixed media piece which describes cedar trees contorted around ancient rock formations and caves.  Extreme natural forces formed this habitat. My painting seeks to connect the spirituality of past inhabitants with my own experience of mystery. It shows what is above ground and hints at what could still be underground.


CV Timeline


University of WI - Milwaukee, BFA- Painting 1974
Workshops:  Ellen Koment, encaustic, 2018, Francisco Benitez, encaustic, 2018


Studio: 1974 - present
Studio Gallery: 1986 - present
Turtle Island Gallery, Egg Harbor, WI 1993-1998
Free Lance Graphics - logos, brochures, illustrations, cookbooks, 1974 -1988

Juried Art Shows 1976 - 2016, Numerous, Notable listed

    Smithsonian Craft Show, Washington, DC
    Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show, Philadelphia, PA
    American Craft Exposition, Chicago, IL
    American Craft Council Shows, Baltimore, St. Paul,
    San Francisco, Atlanta
    Madison Museum of Contemporary Art
       Best of Show1996 & 1997
    Lakefront Festival of the Arts

Illustrated Works

Geology of Door County, Bill Skadden, Mary Ellen Sisulak, 1978
Reflections in a Tarnished Mirror, Tom Kuchenberg, Jim Legault, Mary Ellen Sisulak, 1978
Door County Almanac, Fred Johnson, Vol. 1,1979, Vol. 2,1980
Pinklieee!, written & illustrated picture book, Mary Ellen Sisulak, 2015

Group Exhibitions

“Indelible Exhibit”  - Tokoyo, Japan 2012-2013
“Beyond Words” Miller Art Center, Sturgeon Bay, WI 2017
“2018 Rockford Midwestern Biennial” Rockford Art Museum, Rockford WI 2018
“50 States/200 Artists” Encaustic Art Institute, Santa Fe, NM 2019
“No Creative Boundaries - Anything Goes” Encaustic Art Institute, Santa Fe, NM 2019
“44th Juried” Miller Art Museum, Sturgeon Bay, WI 2019, Merit Award
Solo Exhibition

“Mink River Anthology”,  Link Gallery - Fish Creek, WI, 2003


Standard Oil of Indiana
Harley Davidson
William Calkins
Numerous private collectors


WI Arts Board/Peninsula Arts Assn. Grant 2002 - Mink River Anthology Link Gallery - Fish Creek, WI, 2003.
Non-Profit Auction - Nature Conservancy, 2003


Ellison Bay Arts Ass’n. Established and administrates 2004 - present
Door County North, Vice-president and board member, 2010 - 2015
American Craft Council Juror, 1996, 1999
Hardy Gallery, Ephraim, WI, Participant, juror and donor, 1978 - present
Community murals, “Hines Emerald Dragonfly” and “Monarchs in the Meadow” Ellison Bay Beautification Project with Jill Harding, Ellison Bay, WI 2018

NPR Podcast with Tom Wilmer 1/20/2022

Gallery Representation

Edgewood Orchard Galleries, Fish Creek, WI
Encaustic Art Institute, Santa Fe, NM
Turtle Ridge Gallery, Ellison Bay, WI


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