Kim McCarthy is a contemporary painter using encaustic and mixed media in an expressive, metaphorical style. Her artistic journey began early and joyfully at her grandparents humble kitchen table in a “war time house”, in the small mining community of Geraldton in Northern Ontario. She thinks about how her grandparents would respond today if they only knew she was one of 79 artists selected throughout North America to be featured in a new publication, Encaustic Art in the Twenty-First Century (Schiffer Press, 2016). Those endless sheets of blank paper and crayons lovingly supplied many years ago rooted Kim for a lifetime of creative expression. Today her encaustic paintings are characterized by symbolic imagery developed in rich layers of jewel coloured waxes, textures and glittering gold leaf. One collector describes them as “Magical Wonderlands”.
Kim graduated with a B.A. with a major in Fine Arts followed by a B. Ed. with a visual arts specialist from Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario in 1987. During her third year of University, one of her professor’s secretly removed two of her works from her portfolio, framed them himself and entered them into the University’s Fine Art Exhibit. This act of kindness and his confidence in her was defining, life altering and a gesture that Kim tried to constantly pay forward during her career.
She spent 30 years in the Greater Toronto Area where she taught visual arts privately and in the secondary school system. She was also the department head of the Arts Department for most of her career. Simultaneously, Kim exhibited her own work in numerous solo and juried group exhibitions. Judy Daley, curator for the Art Gallery of Peel and Kim Ness, former director of the McMaster University Museum of Art awarded Kim with the Asencio Heritage Art Award. Furthermore, Kim has been a juror herself and also coordinated an art and food festival. Her artwork is in many private collections throughout North America.
Currently, Kim works full time as an artist and joyfully resides and exhibits in the wonderful, arts focused city of Stratford, Ontario.