Johny Olsson

Airbrush Artist


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Johny Olsson


In the mid 1970’s Johny Olsson trained at KV Art School, Kristianstad, Sweden as a printmaker. His print making at this time was inspired by the German artist Kaethe Kollwitz, and were an exploration of social exclusion.

In 1977 he began to study at Brighton University, Faculty of Art and design. His tutors were Brendan Neiland (Painting) and Harvey Daniels (Printmaking). Here his print making continued to develop the earlier themes through the interpretation of contemporary music into visual stories.

By the 1980’s he started to work extensively in watercolour, using dry brush techniques adopted from American artist Andrew Wyeth. These first watercolour cityscapes used a wide colour palette. Brighton and its seaside attractions were the inspirational source. Many of the pictures at this time were of the Brighton seafront before its gentrification. These pictures gained Johny an international reputation with many sales in Europe and the USA. Two cityscapes from this period were used by the Swedish furniture store IKEA, as posters. Between 1980-1992 Gallery Kråkeslätt, Bromölla, Sweden, represented Johny.

At the end of the 1980’s Johny began working for one of the top perspective artists, in the UK, John Bradbury FSAI. This introduced him to the visual properties of the airbrush. Airbrush painting is a precision technique, using masks to differentiate each layer of colour to build the final image. It enables Johny to create highly realistic images.

Johny’s work has developed from wider cityscape composition to more detailed studies of City minutia, bringing these details into high realism by the use of airbrush and a reduced colour palette. The works are at first sight somewhat abstract; but on closer inspection they are the height of realism.

Throughout 1980’s, 90’s and since the millennium Johny hosted Open House Exhibitions in both Brighton and Worthing, England.  These exhibitions offered a unique and intimate way to view Johny work alongside other local artists. It is a tradition Johny is hoping to continue in Sweden from summer 2013.

In recent years Johny has widened his subject matter to include sporting memorabilia, still life and street images mainly from Italy.  Recent work has included images from The Eden Project, Cornwall,  England.  Johny continues to use London and New York as the iconography for his architectural paintings.

Johny is now based in Sweden and has completed commissioned work including two murals. He has recently established his studio and is now finding new inspiration for his work in the beautiful townscapes of Skane and Blekinge.

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