Ray “Harpo” Hutchinson, Light Bulb Collector reproduction by Tim Olson

Tim Olson

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This pigment print reproduction features an image from an original painting by Tim Olson of Dubuque, Iowa. 

Image size is 15.25" x 19”

Matted size is 20" x 24”.

Edition: 5/15.

In 2003 I started a series of drawings of Dubuque scenes. My original idea was to create a set of alternative postcards-parodies of tourist-friendly artwork-picturing unlikely local scenes. as I began to look at Dubuque and to build up a stock-pile of photographs to draw from, I became less interested in fictional, cartoon subject matter, and was instead drawn to both the visual beauty of Dubuque and to the incongruities created by years of building, erasing, and re-building its parts—one time for reasons of utility, one time for reasons of aesthetics, and other times for reasons impossible to fathom. I started to explore the parking lots, industry, and plots of urban no-man’s-land left by a city expanding outward, leaving its center stretched paper-thin.

For me the best idea is rarely the first idea—it’s much more likely to be the thirteenth idea. The struggle of working out ideas of composition, color and line, one on top of one another, all while trying to retain a high level of clarity, plainly shows in the finished drawings and paintings. In some ways that struggle becomes the drawing style. What is that style? Cartoon-Expressionism? Naïve-Academic? Picturesque-Messiness? All of the above? I’m not sure. But I do think, in the end, these drawings and paintings will make a nice set of postcards.

 Find more of Tim's work here.

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