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70’s self portrait Olivier Mourão


Olivier Mourão, British artist from Brazil, was born on september 10th 1946 and started painting at the age of 8. By the time he had reached 12 years of a age he was a known children’s portrait painter and had his first exhibition in 1960 in Minas (Brazil) where he studied Fine Art at the Guignard School of Art. He had his first exhibition of drawings ad portraits in L’Atelier d’Art (Belo Horizonte-Minas Brazil) in 1965, which was followed by the exhibitions at the Salon Art Museum (1966) and the Salon Ouro Preto (1967).

He had worked displayed in the Dona Beja Museum and painted frescos and murals for the Church of Saint Francis (Pampulha, Belo Horizonte) as well as hosting his own television art show -Band 13- in which he presented his conceptual art works. He left Brazil in a blaze of publicity after climbing to the top of the city hotel and claiming “I wish I were Nero so I could set fire to this court I love so much”.

In 1969,at the age of 23,Olivier came to Europe where he first did sculptures in marble (Carrara) Rome and then worked in lithography in Paris. He finally studied Art History in London. Four years later travels to New York where he creates jewellery and tapestry using natural elements of Brazilian fauna and flora. He also has an exhibition titled”From portraits to the Monumental Painting”before returning to London where he has remained ever since spending his summers in Ibiza.

„Freedom is possible, we achieve it from the inside and live and let live.“ - Olivier Mourão

Olivier Mourão, simplistic maximalist, passionate host and collector of art and pharaonic artefacts, has been a professional artist since the early 1960s. His paintings, designs and sculptures have been highlighted in more than 700 publications, books and 74 exhibitions around the world.

Mourão's life as an artist reads like something from an Oscar-winning movie script: From his early years as Brazil's most famous child portrait painter, to the style-defining years when he met Pablo Picasso and Francis Bacon, his great idol. He was also a good friend of Salvador Dalí and his wife Gala, whose influence is of great value for his work till today.

Inspired by beautiful people, beautiful things, and the island of Ibiza, Olivier creates intense moments of pure hedonism. His works are created with closed eyes in a distinctive process. First, he draws an image straight from the tube of paint on canvas, and then he paints it on cardboard or handmade paper. Spontaneity and simplicity play a key role.

His visual language tells stories about escapism, infantile excitement and immeasurable admiration, in which an uncompromising attitude towards ancient and contemporary art can be found. His exhibitions can also be seen as a kind of savoir vivre, happenings of openness, tolerance and warm curiosity from international viewers and collectors.

Fabio Christ, German world award winning creative

Olivier Mourão Copyright 2022