Julius Olsson (1864 - 1942)
Oil on Canvas
Size (inches): 30 (h) x 40 (w) inches
Size (cm): 76.2 (h) x 101.6 (w) cm
Albert Julius Olsson was a British maritime artist and keen yachtsman. He was born in Islington, London, to a Swedish father and an English mother. Olsson cruised with his yacht most summers, and The Studio commented: ‘He knows the way from the Scillies to the Isle of Wight as most men know their way to the nearest railway station.’
He exhibited a painting of Newlyn in 1887, and sold a painting at Newlyn in 1897. By then he was an important figure in the St Ives school of artists where, from circa 1890 to 1912, despite having little or no formal artistic training himself, he taught alongside Louis Grier and later Algernon Talmage. His work was first accepted at the Royal Academy in 1890, and he joined the New English Art Club in 1891. In 1912 he returned to London. During his time at St Ives, the town drew in many artists and Olsson taught many of them, including Mary McCrossan and Richard Hayley Lever, Reginald Guy Kortright, Emily Carr, John Anthony Park, Charles David Jones Bryant, Robert Borlase Smart and many others. In 1914 Olsson was elected ARA. During the First World War he served as a lieutenant in the RNVR, giving him the opportunity to paint naval ships in action. He became a full member of the RA in 1920.