Kimmy-Koi Art
 

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Ed's Interview with Koi Carp Magazine

The following article was published February 2004 by Koi Carp Magazine in Britain. Koi Carp Magazine is the largest of its kind in Europe.

Paintings with 'Peace' in Mind

By Ann Telford

Sharing the Dream

As his painting career progressed, Ed was invited to go to Japan to visit Koi breeders and their families. He took some of his prints with him to share his dream of painting 'The human feeling of love with living art (koi) in the sweet Raphael style in classical form'.

It's not surprising that Edward's paintings give a feeling that they are painted with 'peace' in mind…Koi Carp Magazine Cover

Some koi keepers not only collect koi but they also enjoy collecting things related to their hobby in one way or another. Ed is, as yet, an unknown artist in the UK koi scene. So, koi art collectors, add his work to your shopping list!

It is always good to know something about an artist's background when studying his paintings, as it can help one understand what they are trying to portray. Ed is a real character who has had more than his fair share of difficult things to handle.

About 'Ed'

Born in Connecticut, and one of six children, Edward was brought up on the freedom of a farm. Dyslexia made school difficult—his skill was fencing (with swords!) and he took part in tournaments at Duke University, John Hopkins and West Point. West Point is the US form of the UK's Sandhurst.

During a two-year tour in Vietnam, he took part in over 150 combat missions, was shot down three times and at one point was listed as missing in action. During one mission Edward saved 25 soldier's lives, which led to him being awarded a 6th Air Medal with Valour.

The Discovery of Koi

Post-traumatic stress disorder is something that is known and understood today. The effects of the war in Vietnam caught up with Edward and in 1995 things came to a head. The Veteran's Administration stepped in with a helping hand. During his recovery time, a fellow veteran told Ed about his koi pond.

Interested by his friend's tales, Edward got a koi book, and started on the trail of koi information hunting. His latent, artist's eye was caught by the colours of the koi and he became determined to have a pond of his own one day. All readers of Koi Carp know what it is to catch the koi bug and Ed was thoroughly trapped. Not one, but three ponds later Ed admitted, "I have to say they are my therapy, because the memories of Vietnam are not allowed in this place." KoiCarp Magazine articleEd shared this while sitting by the largest of his ponds. It's not surprising then, that Edward's paintings give a feeling that they are painted with peace in mind.

Moving On

On recovery, Ed showed the same determination as he'd shown on the battleground. Against some strong opposition he finally badgered the Veteran's Administration into sending him back to school. Edward went to the Springfield Technical Community College, where he studied art. He spent a total of four years studying art and taking courses on aquaculture.

Ed was then commissioned to paint a picture of Kimmy—Ed's Model in his Kimmy-Koi series of paintings. Later he asked her if he could paint her again but this time with a fish. She agreed to this rather strange request, thus his painting "The Kiss" was born.

Discovering Japan

Many high points of his career obviously mean a great deal to Ed. Visiting over 20 koi farms in Japan; shaking hands with Mr. Sakai; touring Sakai Fish Farm's Breeding Facilities; being offered to be sent a koi for his latest painting The Rest by Mr. Dase of Koshijii Farm, which duly arrived and is featured in the painting. Having his original four paintings in the Kimmy-Koi series hung on his college's library walls; working in his tranquil studio surrounded by Japanese gardens and ponds swimming with Japanese Koi.

Ed's paintings have been displayed in various art exhibitions. He also sculpts and creates Japanese style wood block prints. His sculpture “The Vision” was featured in the Monson Arts Council Art Show—“The Heaven Below, The Heaven Above.”

Reprinted from February 2004 issue of Koi Carp Magazine.

See also: Ed's interview with Koi USA Magazine

Contact Ed