Olive Cuskelly is a local, professional artist living near Daingean, Co. Offaly. She grew up here with her parents and nine siblings, and now finds herself living on the same road, rearing her own family. From as young as she can remember she always had a passion for drawing and painting. Having watched her older sister also develop her talents in art down through the years, she too knew it was going to be the only career path for her. Olive began her career teaching art to children, students and adults, as well as working in the Midland Health Board as Art Therapist, to physically disabled patients of varying backgrounds, age and abilities. She studied Visual Communications in college and on graduating, left Ireland to work in a leading design firm in Sydney, Australia. Having gained valuable experience working abroad, she returned to Ireland in 1997 to open her own design company in Tullamore. During this time she received many prestigious Business Excellence Awards, both on a regional and national level. In 2003 Olive decided to fulfil other creative ambitions, and to dedicate herself full time to her art and focus primarily on her painting.
Since then she has erected a purpose built art studio, ‘The Green Haven’, at her home and where some of her paintings are on display permanently. Over the past 14 years, Olive’s confidence in her craft grew. She has exhibited widely and her works have become part of many private and public collections in Ireland, England, France and Australia. She also frequently undertakes commissioned pieces for private, public and corporate buildings. Olive appreciates the importance of exhibiting work locally and strives to ensure her paintings continue to showcase in many public outlets, including town and county Libraries, art and framing units, and several collaborative arts events in the midlands on an ongoing basis.
Olive spends some time photographing her subject matter and collecting up images for future reference for her works. From there she makes several rough sketches before deciding on one to be the basis of her painting. Colour harmony, proportions and tonal layout are key to the success of any piece. Olive is inspired by her natural surroundings and delights in the power and energy of the human figure. As a contemporary artist, she has been able to progress and continually evolve, without being limited to a particular style or media. Her paintings capture a particular moment in time and include themes from simple everyday images of children and nature to vibrant works of nudes and our environment. She has a unique ability to exploit the medium by combining both fine brush detail with textured palette knife work. Colour is very important in her work along with the bold use of light and shade. She aims to capture the viewer’s imagination while focusing on mood and atmosphere.
One of Olive’s biggest inspirations comes from London born artist Kenneth Webb. He first came to Galway over 50 years ago and now a Connemara –based painter is one of Ireland’s oldest and most inspiring working artists. His imaginative use of colour and his superb technique is a major influence on Olive’s own work. She says there are huge amounts of talent among Irish artists both regionally and nationally and she loves following how other artists develop their styles too. She believes we all, to some extent, learn from and inspire each other.
Olive is also a member of Offaly Crafty, a collective organisation that promotes, encourages and demonstrates the vast variety of talented craft people living and working in County Offaly.
Contact: mobile: 087 2789 722 Email email@example.com
Facebook: facebook.com/olivecuskelly www.offalycrafty.com