At left, John Olsen’s studio; the artist himself
Credit: © Hugh Stewart

Announced by the National Gallery of Victoria earlier this year, The You Beaut Country is one of the most-highly anticipated events on Australia’s cultural calendar for its comprehensive survey of the careers of one of Australia’s greatest living artists, John Olsen.

Now, courtesy of the NGV, you can preview select works below from what promises to be an unmissable retrospective of Olsen’s work from a career spanning almost seven decades.

Known for his vivid abstract works that capture in striking compositions the multitude of Australian landscapes, Olsen has forged an incredible career as one of the country’s most decorated artists, having been recognised with both an Order of Australia and an Order of the British Empire in recognition of his services. Included amongst this exhibition will be the landscape series from which the exhibition takes its name, The you beaut country, which Olsen began in 1960 and captures his endearing affinity for his subject matter.

Director of the NGV, Tony Ellwood, has reiterated as much, saying that this exhibition “will offer an extraordinary and in-depth insight into Olsen’s life and practice” by showcasing major works alongside lesser known elements of his multimedia practice that make him “one of Australia’s most distinguished artists.”

John Olsen: The You Beaut Country will go on display at The Ian Potter Centre at Federation Square from September 16 to February 12, 2017, before arriving at the Art Gallery of New South Wales where it will run from March 10 to June 12, 2017. Tickets are on sale now.

River passing through a plain 1982, oil on canvas, 136.6 x 152.4 cm, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Purchased 1982
Credit: © John Olsen, administered by Viscopy, Sydney
Golden summer, Clarendon 1983 oil on canvas 183.0 x 244.0 cm Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, purchased with the assistance of Salomon Brothers 1985
Credit: © John Olsen, administered by Viscopy, Sydney
Pied beauty 1969, oil on composition board 121.8 x 134.0 cm Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide South Australian Government Grant 1969
Credit: © John Olsen, administered by Viscopy, Sydney

Sydney Harbour 2016, synthetic polymer paint on canvas, 137.0 x 149.5 cm, Collection of the artist
Credit: © John Olsen, administered by Viscopy, Sydney
The bushman’s bed 2015, oil on canvas, 140.0 x 150.0 cm, Collection of the artist
Credit: © John Olsen, administered by Viscopy, Sydney

Tile image: Portrait of John Olsen © Hugh Stewart
Cover image: Spanish encounter 1960, oil on composition board, Art Gallery of New South Wales, © John Olsen