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Tim Olsen: Son of the Brush

Art Almanac
Alice Dingle
21 December 2020

The Olsen name has long been regarded as that of Australian art royalty, with revered artist John Olsen arguably the sovereign. ‘Son of the Brush’ is a frank memoir shedding light on the personal and professional life of the artist’s only son, Tim Olsen. A detailed recount of events traversing the art dealer and gallerist’s early childhood to present day, Olsen’s story is part celebration, part confessional; unfurling the art scene (both nationally and internationally, past and present) and owning his identity and place within it, and within his family.

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Swashbuckler and Son

Australian Book Review
Ian Britain
December 2020

Extract: A voyage round my father’, to quote the title of John Mortimer’s autobiographical play of 1963, has been a popular form of personal memoir in Britain from Edmund Gosse’s Father and Son (1907) to Michael Parkinson’s just-published Like Father, Like Son. The same form produced some of the best Australian writing in the twentieth century, with two assured classics in the case of Germaine Greer’s Daddy, We Hardly Knew You (1989) and Raimond Gaita’s Romulus, My Father (1998). The tradition has continued into the present century with – to list some of the choicest plums – Richard Freadman’s Shadow of Doubt: My father and myself (2003), Sheila Fitzpatrick’s My Father’s Daughter (2010), Jim Davidson’s A Führer for a Father (2017), and Christopher Raja’s Into the Suburbs: A migrant’s story (2020). Mothers in such sagas are far from absent, and they can emerge, though not always, as the more obviously loveable or loving figures. As signalled by most of those titles, however, mothers loom less large over the unfolding narrative. Fathers may not always know or act best, but, partly because of their often tougher, commanding mien, they become irresistibly the centre of attention.

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Tim Olsen: My mother's wise words taught me why we love art

The Sydney Morning Herald, Sunday Life
Robyn Doreian
12 December 2020

Tim Olsen / Occupation Owner Olsen Gallery / Age 58 / Status In a new relationship / Best known for His art gallery

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Great holiday reads, from page-turners to perfect prose

The Sydney Morning Herald
Georgie Gordon
12 December 2020

Whether at the beach, the park or lazing in bed, these are the books you’ll want to keep returning to over the break.

Son of the Brush
by Tim Olsen (Allen & Unwin)

Olsen’s memoir about the joys and challenges of growing up in the shadow of his famous artist father, John, is a fascinating read. In addition to all the juicy art world anecdotes, it’s a candid look at his journey from “free range” child to respected art dealer.

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Booked up for Summer: Son of the Brush

December 2020

Son of the Brush is Tim's memoir, starting with his earliest memories when the family lived in Watsons Bay and ending in 2020 with a bough of COVID-19.

Son of the Brush: A Memoir by Tim Olsen, behind-the-scenes of the art world

The Australian
Ashleigh Wilson
5 December 2020

Tim Olsen gives an insider’s view of the art world and living in the long shadow of his famous father John.

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Tim Olsen Son of the Brush Review and Interview

Living Arts Canberra
Barbie Robinson
2 December 2020

Described as a memoir, Son of the Brush does indeed introduce us to some of the key figures of the art world in Australia in the 20th and 21st century,  in the context of the life of the author, son of painter John Olsen.

Listen to the interview here

Image: Tim Olsen at the book launch, AGNSW Photo: Wesley Nel

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Sophie Cape video tour

November - December 2020

Video tour of Sophie Cape's 2020 exhibition at OLSEN Gallery, Woollahra

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Related exhibition: Sophie Cape Flash Point

Tim Olsen on growing up with a famous father, artist John Olsen

Radio National
Hilary Harper on Life Matters
24 November 2020

John Olsen has been called "Australia's greatest living artist" but what was it like growing up within his orbit?
Art dealer and gallery owner Tim Olsen reflects on his childhood and life in a revealing and poignant memoir, 'Son of the Brush.

Guest: Tim Olsen, author of 'Son of the Brush'
Duration: 13min 8sec
Broadcast: Tue 24 Nov 2020, 9:26am

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Tim Olsen's memoir of life with his famous dad is a fascinating insight into the Sydney art world

Canberra Times
Sasha Grishin
21 November 2020

Tim Olsen is the son of the high profile artist, 92-year-old John Olsen. As painters of his father's generation considered themselves as "brothers of the brush", Tim Olsen, by extension, calls himself a "son of the brush". This is a personal memoir - lively, chatty and quite readable.

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My father, my sadness: John Olsen's son paints a portrait

The Age
Helen O'Neill
12 November 2020

John Olsen is the subject of an explosive memoir penned by his son, who accuses the artist of multiple infidelities and building his creative career at the expense of the family he left behind.

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Tim Olsen on getting out from under the shadow of his famous father John: 'He’s not a demigod'

The Guardian
Susan Chenery
10 November 2020

John Olsen’s Australian landscapes captured the world’s imagination but to his son the artist was akin to a deity – until he wasn’t.

Where there is artistic acclaim there is often collateral damage. History is littered with redundant muses, discarded partners, children left behind. It can take a certain ruthlessness to live for art, in a heightened state of intensity, making it the only thing that matters.

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Paul Davies | Paradise with a Twist

Australian Financial Review
Stephen Todd

Paradise with a twist; 'Failed painter' Paul Davies creates artworks of uncanny architectural allure

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Maroon 5’s Jesse Carmichael Keeps it Short and Sweet with Two-Minute Movies

July 2020

Participants can do as they like, but it can’t run longer than two minutes; that’s the idea behind 2 Minute Movies (2mm), a collective of filmmakers and artists founded in early 2019 by Maroon 5’s Jesse Carmichael. “The biggest takeaway from this period of isolation is just how important it is to have friends and family around to make things in life with; memories and art,” he tells “Southland Sessions.” Despite starting before the pandemic, the collective’s more recent videos reflect intimate portraits of the current moment.

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Laura Jones 'Arcadia'

March 2020

Arcadia by Laura Jones opens at Glasshouse, Port Macquarie 6 March at 6pm. The exhibition will run from 7 March ?? 19 April 2020.

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Exhibition of New Works by Australian Photographic Artist Leila Jeffreys Opens at Olsen Gruin

Art Daily
Jose Villareal
December 19, 2019

Revisiting the world of the Budgerigar ?? the subject of her first solo exhibition some nine years ago ?? Leila Jeffreys?? High Society includes her signature large format portraits and sees her exploring new territory. 

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Related exhibition: Leila Jeffreys High Society

Artist Spotlight: Leila Jeffreys

Matt Pike
September 2019

Leila Jeffreys is a leading Australian contemporary artist, who began documenting birds in photographic portraiture back in 2008. Leila is able to capture impeccable detail in her subjects, abstracting them from their natural environment and inviting the viewer to confront them in a more personable way. 

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Related exhibition: Leila Jeffreys High Society

Birds of a Feather

Art / Edit
Stephanie Vigilante
September 2019

Leila Jeffreys has dedicated her practice to capturing our feathered friends on film. She talks to Stephanie Vigilante about the power of the portrait. 

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Related exhibition: Leila Jeffreys High Society

Focus on Photography: 7 Not-To-Be-Missed Solo Shows in New York

Galerie Magazine
Paul Laster
September 18, 2019

Contemporary photography is a major focus of the city??s September shows.

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Related exhibition: George Byrne Exit Vision