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John Olsen

Australian artist John Olsen - A larrikin legend still breaking all the rules

Australian Womens Weekly
Susan Chenery
April 2017

Living the artistic life sounds romantic, but there have been some dark and difficult moments in the life of the irrepressible artist John Olsen and his family. Susan Chenery meets a living legend and his talented offspring.

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Related exhibition
John Olsen New works

"Hello my lovelies": Artist John Olsen greets his past at the Art Gallery of NSW Retrospective

Sydney Morning Herald
Linda Morris
10 March 2017

"Hello, my lovelies, you are still here," the artist John Olsen exclaims as if approaching old friends.  On the wall of the Art Gallery of NSW are a series of oils painted in the early 1960s from which the new retrospective, John Olsen: the you beaut country, borrows its laconic title.

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How art helped John Olsen through heartbreak

The Daily Telegraph
Elizabeth Fortescue
9 March 2017

ARTISTS often talk about their studios as locations of solitude and retreat. But John Olsen's beautiful Southern Highlands workspace took on an even deeper dimension late last year.

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Artist John Olsen celebrates 89th birthday at Newcastle Art Gallery

Newcastle Herald
Sam Rigney
22 January 2017

ABOUT a year ago, iconic Australian artist John Olsen agreed to create an iconic painting that would capture the essence of his birthplace. 

It was a deeply personal work, a reflection on his beginnings. 

Unfortunately, illness meant he couldn’t be there when the exhibition opened in November last year. 

But on Saturday at Newcastle Art Gallery – just a short distance from his childhood home – Olsen got to share a piece of that work, a slice of the Hunter, with hundreds of other art lovers.

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SON OF THE BRUSH

Vogue Australia
Tim Olsen
October 2016

John Olsen is one of Australia's greatest living artists. Here, his son, gallerist Tim Olsen, who helped curate a new retrospective, reflects on his bohemian childhood and gives a rare insight into his father's powerful ability and influence

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John Olsen retrospective: Brimming with life and love

The Sydney Morning Herald
Hannah Francis
14 September 2016

If painting is dead, as some art critics say, nobody told John Olsen. "I'd like to know the time of death," he says with the brightest of glints in his eye. "I'm alive. So painting isn't dead."

At 88 years old and widely considered Australia's greatest living painter, Olsen is about to launch his largest ever retrospective at the National Gallery of Victoria.

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The Sun King

The Weekend Australian
Ashleigh Wilson
10 - 11 September 2016

John Olsen's second major retrospective, 25 years after the first, is a landmark for our greatest living artist

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John Olsen: at home with the Australian artist

The Sydney Morning Herald
Amanda Hooton
3 September 2016

Over lunch at his home in the NSW southern highlands, John Olsen shares with Amanda Hooton a lifetime of insights into landscape, poetry and painting.

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Celebrate Australia Day with Olsen's epic landscape

Sydney Morning Herald
Janet Hawley
23 January 2016

"I'm not old, I'm just aged," Olsen says, beaming, as the sun glints on the lake which laps his studio and sprawling house in the NSW Southern Highlands.

"One great value in being aged is that it allows retrospective thinking. I can now look back at the changes in my lifetime through a mental telescope....

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Olsen's King Sun rises

The Age
Dewi Cooke
30 July 2013

Amid the glass walls and muted tones of Docklands' commercial building clusters, something vibrant and altogether more organic has risen. A quivering sun, its rays unfurling in orange, pink and splotches of green across an immense canvas (six by eight metres) was installed at the weekend under the watchful eye of its creator, famed Australian artist John Olsen.

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Salute the Sun

Sydney Morning Herald - Spectrum
Ali Gripper
June 24 2013

In his twilight years, John Olsen is taking on one of the biggest challenges of his career. Ali Gripper steps inside his studio to find an exuberant tribute to the Australian landscape.

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New Home for Mural

Newcastle Herald
Amy Edwards
25/08/20212

Newcastle born artist John Olsen gathered his emotions as he stood in front of his artwork at Newcastle Art Gallery yesterday evening.
Olsen painted the 1964 ceiling mural titled The Sea Sun of 5 Bells for his friend Dr Ann Lewis and it was unveiled last night as part of the gallery's latest exhibition.

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Small joy flows from a lake of tears

The Daily Telegraph
Elizabeth Fortescue
24/3/12

When Paul Lockyer took off on his fateful tril to Lake Eyre last August, the veteran ABC journalist left a manuscript for his family to read while he was away.

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Olsen offers painting in honour of ABC's Lockyer

The Australian
Sallie Don
24/3/12

John Olsen made the final touches to his latest ainting of Lake Eyre only a few days ago. Approaching Lake Eyre was his memorial to Paul Lockyer, the ABC journalist who died in a helicopter crash alongside cameraman John Bean and pilot Gary Ticehurst at Lake Eyre in August last year.

 

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Walking on Eyre

Qantas Magazine
Larry Writer
10/1/12

From Lake Eyre to Sydney Harbour the Australian landscape remains a treasured muse for John Olsen, one of Australia’s most acclaimed artists.

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I'm Not Ready to Go Yet

The Sydney Morning Herald - Good Weekend
Janet Hawley
10/11/12

John Olsen, our greatest living artist on squeezing the juice from his final years.

 

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John Olsen - A Life on the Line

Artist Profile
Steve Lopes + Leo Robba
Issue 16

In his eighth decade, artist John Olsen’s legendary lust for life is as obvious as ever and so is his devotion to drawing, a practice that has underpinned his long and distinguished career. What is also evident when talking with Olsen is that his diverse life experiences have informed his approach to art. Memories of tough times during the Depression in the late 1920’s, creative battles of a life spent dedicated to art, and the many wonderful people who have shared his world and great places he has visited are all deeply intertwined through his work. He is still looking outward, projecting what he sees and more importantly celebrating life- just as he did as a young boy growing up in Newcastle, discovering a passion for drawing.

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Olsen Finds New Shapes in the Vastness of the Landscape

The Sydney Morning Herald
Louise Schwartzkoff
June 9 2011

At a table laden with paint-crusted crockery, John Olsen slides his brush into a dish if curdling watercolour. The paint is as thick and creamy as the salt deposits on the surface of Lake Eyre. It bleeds at the edges when Olsen strokes his brush across a freshly painted indigo background. “Look there,” he says. “It’s alive. And there’s sort of a running figure, you see? Ill just give it some arms.”

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Masters at Work

Sydney Morning Herald- Spectrum
John McDonald
June 4-5th

Top dealers flocking to the influential Hong Kong art fair see it all, from young talent to genuine show- stoppers to the tasteless and over-priced, writes John McDonald.

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Patron, paint and the ceiling

Sydney Morning Herald
Matt Buchanan
May 28-29 2011

Earlier this month Sydney lost one of its great arts patrons, Ann Lewis, to cancer. Over the years Lewis enriched the culture, donating remarkable and extraordinarily valuable paintings, photography and sculpture to the Museum of Contemporary Art, the National Gallery of Australia and others

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