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Edward J. Walicki - Master Fish Carver
Novi, Michigan, U. S. A.
(1964 - 2008)
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"I was blessed for being around him."
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Professional wildlife artist Ed Walicki was an award winning artist in sculptures in urethane, wood and stone for over 20 years. Known best for his work in aquatic wildlife reproductions Edís realistic sculptures won Best of Show honors for a record four consecutive years at the Great Lakes Fish Decoy Association World Competition and a Best of Show at the Ward Foundation Fish Carving Competition, as well as numerous national and international awards. Working from his studios in Novi and Grayling Michigan Ed specialized in collectable fine art fish sculptures and nature themed commercial exhibits. His comprehensive in-house mold making and casting capabilities provided additional production benefits for his clients still today. His work is on display in galleries, museums and private collections around the world.

"Probably the greatest fish carver that should be credited
with furthering the art form, is Ed Walicki."

In addition to his original sculptures, Ed has pioneered a full line of fish carving instructional materials, tools, and products used by professional wood carvers and sculptors worldwide. Ed also taught hands-on classes in woodcarving, stone carving, urethane carving and mold making and casting in his Novi, Michigan home and his retreat/fish camp in Grayling, Michigan.

"Ed did more with fish carving classes and carving aids
than anyone ever did, even today."

Those who knew Ed as a teacher were blessed with his willingness to share new ideas and concepts that he had learned himself, making for a wonderful learning environment. Ed constantly pushed the envelope with what could be done in making molds and casting materials. He will be not only remembered for his beautiful fish creations, but for his willingness to share an idea or lend a hand in whatever creation his friends or students were working on. He will be remembered as someone with a driving passion for creating beautiful fish, a tremendous love for his "Kirs", and son Kyle, and as an ardent and gifted fly-fisherman.

"He will be remembered as someone with a driving passion
for creating beautiful fish."

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I knew Ed very well and talked with him and Kirsten up until his death. I miss him greatly and he and I talked almost daily. Ed kept trying to convert me to fish carving but I just couldn't exchange feathers for scales, I suppose.

Ed had no idea that I was a minister until after my first week long class with him and we were on our way back to the airport. He so appreciated how I viewed ministry and it allowed him to be Ed up until the day he died. What a fighter he was as well! He really believed he was going to whip his cancer . He had an exceptional mind, and I mean exceptional.

Ed, passed away in 2008 and his DVDís on carving/mold making are still recognized as some of the best on the market as well as his fish carving reproduction casts and other aids. His wife Kirsten and son Kyle, continue to the business today and are still actively selling Edís products.


Kerry Smith
Text courtesy Kerry Smith
Kerry Smith is an accomplished bird carver and sculptor, who lives in Memphis, Tennessee
Click HERE to visit Kerry's website.
Photographs courtesy Kirsten Walicki, Howell, Michigan
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Major Competition Awards for Fish Carving


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1998

Great Lakes Fish Decoy Association World Competition
BROWN TROUT LOG CARVING
Best of Show - Decorative Carvings
People's Choice Award
Carver's Choice Award
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1999

Great Lakes Fish Decoy Association World Competition
OCEAN RUN BROOK TROUT
Best of Show - Decorative Carvings
People's Choice Award
Carver's Choice Award
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2000

Great Lakes Fish Decoy Association World Competition
SOUTH AMERICAN AROWANA
Best of Show - Decorative Carvings
People's Choice Award
Carver's Choice Award
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Ward Foundation Fish Carving Competition
SOUTH AMERICAN AROWANA
Best of Show Fish Carving


2001

Great Lakes Fish Decoy Association World Competition
BLUEGILL CARVING
Best of Show - Decorative Carvings
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The Great Lakes Fish Decoy Collecting and Carving Association has the goal of collecting, preserving, and passing on the tradition of the fish spearing decoy. Since their founding in 1989, they have worked to keep the art form of the fish decoy alive with friendly competitions, where people gather together to share common interests, trade decoys, stories and carving techniques.







Message From The National Fish Carvers Guild

Dear NFCG Members,

It is with a profound sense of sorrow that we mourn the loss of Ed Walicki, a true icon in the world of fish carving. Ed was overcome this week by his long battle with cancer. Our heartfelt prayers go out to Kirsten and extended family for their enormous loss. The NFCG as well as the entire fish carving community will feel the void created by Ed's passing.

It has been a privilege for the Guild to publish several articles of our colleague and friend. The influence Ed has had upon fish carvers from around the world have been manifested in his world-class carvings, research, teaching aids, and publications. To try and capture Ed's true contributions to fish carving would take several novels to do him justice. We need only to type in the name "Ed Walicki" into any internet search engine to get a true picture of this man's influence on our art form.

There are many who cross our paths in this art form. Some are just flickers of light during our life, and others touch our life in dramatic fashion. There is no question as to where Ed falls into the spectrum. Ed may be gone amongst our ranks but his legacy will continue to be felt not only by those of us who knew him, but by those who have yet to know of him.

Weíll miss you Ed Walicki !
The NFCG




Waylon Jennings - "America"




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