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Byron Shire
October 22, 2021

Oh how Margaret Olley loved to paint

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Portrait of Margaret Olley in her Paddington Studio. Photo John McRae.

Born in Lismore, Margaret Olley’s work is known and loved all over the world and though the artist died in 2011, she left a legacy of stunning artwork which will be the focus of a new exhibition in Murwillumbah.

A life in art: Margaret Olley, features Olley’s works from the Tweed Regional Gallery collection. Artworks included in the exhibition date from as early as 1938, when Margaret was just 15 years of age, through to 2011, the year of her death.

A life in art is a unique celebration of Olley’s incredible career and her significant role in the history of Australian art. This year marks the 10th anniversary of her death at 88 years of age.

Margaret Olley’s ‘Wildflowers and Pears’. Photo Tweed Regional Gallery

Gallery Director Susi Muddiman OAM said Margaret Olley dedicated her life to art, not only as an artist but also as a philanthropist to regional and metropolitan public galleries and as a mentor to several emerging artists.

‘Since the Margaret Olley Art Centre opened in 2014, we have been developing our collection of artworks by Olley, mainly through fundraising and working with donors, and this exhibition is a showcase of this development to date. The unique collection tells a wonderful story.’

A life in art is a chronological exploration of Olley’s extraordinary life through her greatest legacy – her art.

Collectively, the artworks illustrate stylistic evolutions in her practice while revealing stories from her eventful life.

The Gallery is committed to the development and care of its collection as an important asset for the whole community. One of the Gallery’s four collecting profiles is dedicated to the ‘life and work of Margaret Olley’.

Margaret Olley’s ‘Bananas from the Garden’. Photo Tweed Regional Gallery.

The Tweed Regional Gallery collection includes a substantial number of works generously gifted by the Margaret Olley Estate, following the artist’s bequest of $1 million towards the purpose-built Margaret Olley Art Centre extension, which includes the re-creation of her home studio.

Other artworks in this exhibition have been acquired via the financial support of the Tweed Regional Gallery Foundation Ltd., the Friends of Tweed Regional Gallery and Margaret Olley Art Centre Inc., the Tweed Regional Gallery Donations Fund and as gifts to the collection by generous donors.

A life in art: Margaret Olley will be on display in the Margaret Olley Art Centre at Tweed Regional Gallery from Saturday 1 May until Sunday 31 October 2021.

For information on current and upcoming exhibitions at Tweed Regional Gallery & Margaret Olley Art Centre, visit https://artgallery.tweed.nsw.gov.au/





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