Born between the Menomonee and Kinnickinnic Rivers crossing Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Kellene Kulas grew up with an eclectic education. As an international port city, Milwaukee and nearby Chicago provided Kellene with exposure to many vibrant cultures and art forms. From the legendary Summerfest Music Festival to the pageantry of the Barnum and Bailey Circus parades, Kellene soaked up the splendor. The source of all life in Milwaukee is Lake Michigan, whose beauty is as vast as the horizon and big as the sky. The fine art collections at the Milwaukee Art Museum and the exquisite craft at the Milwaukee Public Museum enriched her growing heart and mind.
Kellene studied both theater and art at a private school on the edge of Lake Michigan where she won awards and accolades for both performance and art. One notable award, Best of Show at the Wisconsin State Fair, was won for her watercolor of clustering monarch butterflies. Kellene was awarded the prestigious Layton Art Scholarship which enabled her to attend a small college with a student gallery and classrooms designed in the style of a Japanese tea garden. These are the shaping influences. Her trips to Italy, Austria, Germany, Spain, Portugal and France left their impressions, as well. The great museums and churches and street bazaars became benchmarks and reference points.
After graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and additional extensive study at various local colleges in metal fabrication techniques, Kellene moved to New York to continue her studies in metalsmithing at the Fashion Institute of Technology where she graduated with an Associate of Arts and Sciences degree in Jewelry Design. Kellene went on to work for Barry Kieselstein-Cord, F. Blancato, and Carvin French, a premier jewelry making company. As a jeweler, Kellene made pieces in platinum, gold and gemstones for Tiffany & Co., Van Cleef & Arpels, Asprey, Bulgari, Lalique, and Faberge, to name a few. Kellene started her own company and made one of a kind, engagement and wedding rings by hand.
After several years a change of pace and environment was required, so Kellene moved to a small town in the Taconic Mountains of Upstate New York and started working at a small bed and breakfast near a ski resort. Eventually Kellene was running the bed and breakfast and having the time of her life reveling in the oldest mountain range on the planet. She foraged for wild mushrooms and picked raspberries and elderberries. She made cookies. Kellene continued her independent study of aromatherapy and created over 40 highly effective and distinct formulations for a variety of skin conditions and psychological ailments.
The winds of change called to Kellene once again and she left to do some traveling and rekindle her long neglected art career. She gathered materials from New York, Oregon, Wisconsin and New Mexico, and finally settled in Sarasota, Florida for a year long immersion in painting and sculpture. She created dazzling, luminous paintings of sun, moon and water. The sculptures are mobile-like constructions of layers and shapes.
All too soon, New York was calling her back and Kellene settled on Long Island and took a job at a jewelry shop. She continues to create her paintings and sculptures. She is intensively and extensively studying Reiki, acupressure, and the healing properties of gemstones and crystals. Kellene is also currently launching her own jewelry business that features fine and difficult to acquire gemstone beads.
Kellene lives happily, surrounded by beauty.