Olympia McEwan is a visual artist living and working on Guernsey. She studied Fine Art at Loughborough College, graduating in 1993. Currently, Olympia’s practice is deeply inspired by the Japanese art of impermanence - Wabi Sabi. This poetic philosophy is built on the aesthetics of restraint, naturalness, joy, and melancholy.
“My paintings have moments of unexpected and abstracted areas of colour. Rendered in layers of paint with flattened linear negative spaces, giving the paintings a real vitality. I work in both acrylic and oils, mainly painting on linen panels. Sometimes my larger pieces are made up of several boards, creating a slightly disjointed grid effect, which also adds to the story of the image.”
Olympia has had several exhibitions on Guernsey, including a solo Museum show in 2018 called “Amazing Women! Yellow Chair Portraits”. This was a celebratory exhibition of fifteen portrait paintings of women from within the community, who contribute to the happiness of islanders, as well as the lives of many in communities further afield. They included the co-founder of Specsavers, the first ordained woman vicar on Guernsey and a high profile aid worker.
In 2020, Olympia McEwan curated and published the book, In Living Memory, involving over 30 contributors, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Liberation of the Channel Islands from the occupying German forces, during WW2. “Heartfelt stories and images, together commemorating the freedom we enjoy today.” Dame Mary Perkins