Thursday, November 05, 2009

OFTA Features Prairie Plant Watercolorist George Olson

Above: Olson autographing a copy of his book in 2007

Join OFTA(Old Friends Talk Arts) on Wednesday, November 11th at 10:00 AM at the Buchanan Center for the Arts in downtown Monmouth, IL for a presentation on “Drawing the Plants of the Prairie” by George Olson, a well known watercolorist.

Professor Olson was on the faculty of the College of Wooster in Ohio, where he taught art from 1963 to 2000. His prairie plant studies have been exhibited widely in the U.S. and England, including more than thirty one-person exhibitions at such venues as the British Museum of Natural History, the Missouri Botanical Garden, the Chicago Botanic Garden, and the Royal Horticultural Society. He and his wife Pat now live outside of Woodhull, IL

In his 2005 book with essayist John Madson, The Elemental Prairie: Sixty Tallgrass Plants, Olson revealed his love for the mid-western prairie and his devotion to the rendering of its astoundingly diverse plant life. One reviewer, Robert McCracken Peck of the Academy of Natural Sciences, commented “George Olson and John Madson are the artist laureate and poet laureate of the prairie. They capture its beauty, complexity, and magic in ways that allow us to really see and feel and understand this uniquely American habitat and all that it represents. The Elemental Prairie’s compelling mix of illustration and text make it one of the best natural history publications I have seen in a very long time.”

OFTA programs are available to every member of the community free of charge and come with complimentary coffee and cookies. If you have an arts related topic you would like addressed or have an arts related program you would like to present in 2010, please contact Jim De Young, the OFTA coordinator, at 734-5529 or

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