Photographer: Christer Strömholm
Photographer: Christer Strömholm

Gudmar Olovson

1936 - 2017

A celebration of love and of human emotions, Gudmar Olovson’s work is found in numerous private and corporate collections around the world as well as in eminent galleries and museums.

Olovson’s achievement would not have been conceivable without the craftmanship and rare dedication of highly qualified artisans working behind the scenes. Gudmar aspired to maintain ageless techniques which sculptors have worked in symbiosis with for millenia, including the dexterity and expertise of bronze founders, agrandisseurs / enlargers, moulders, ciseleurs / metal carvers and patina experts.

Today, foundries such as Fonderie de Coubertin (France), Bergman’s Konstgjuteri or Pettersson Konstgjuteri (Sweden) and many others with whom he worked perpetuate these traditions.

Young Gudmar Olovson - Swedish Sculptor and Swedish Artist
Gudmar Olovson drawing his grandchild
Le sculpteur dessinant sont petit-fils

The Artist

Gudmar Olovson was exhibited at all the big "Salons" in Paris ever since the early sixties, the latest being a complete one-man retrospective at La Monnaie de Paris (The French Mint) in 2007.

In 2008, a museum honouring Gudmar’s work was inaugurated in Falsterbo, Sweden (Falsterbonäsets Open Air Museum, Höllviken), featuring five monumental bronzes: "The Two Trees", "Prelude to Life", "Two Sisters", "Concorde", "Wounded Woman-Bird". Swedish businessman Bo Hjelt, a close friend, sponsored the park through the Hjelt Foundation.

Gudmar Olovson´s probably most acclaimed work of art, "The Two Trees", is prominently showcased, in monumental size, in Falsterbo, in his sculpture garden at Château de Cheverny, in the Bois de Boulogne in Paris, in the gardens of Château Pétrus and adorning the HQ of Ferring Pharmaceuticals in Copenhagen. "Two Sisters" stands in front of the same corporation’s facilities in New Jersey and all adorns Château de Cheverny as well as does ”Prelude”, which likewise embellishes the halls of Medicover’s health clinics and centers in Warsaw and Bucharest.

"The Dove", a symbol of peace, stands as a herculean landmark for sailors in the Swedish Bohuslän archipelago, on the island (property of the Schmidt family) iconic Swedish actress Ingrid Bergman, another friend of the artist and his family, called home.

On the French Riviera, "J’aime Les Nuages" and "La Concorde" proudly stand on the seafront promenade of Cagnes-sur-Mer since 2015.

His many sculpted portraits include those of HRH Carl XVI Gustaf King of Sweden, HRH Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, Pope John Paul II, Charles de Gaulle and of Georges Pompidou. Ingrid Bergman, Jacob Wallenberg, Peter Wallenberg, Gustaf F. Serlachius and Philippe de Rothschild are among the numerous other portraited grandees, many of whom remained life-long friends.

He was married from 1964 to 1982 to Birgitta Holmberg. They had two children, Magnus born in 1965 and Susanne in 1970.

Gudmar Olovson passed away in southern France on April 17th, 2017 at the age of 81.

Exhibitions

Gudmar Olovson - Sculptures - Place Falguière 1962
Gudmar Olovson, Place Falguière 1962 with fellow sculptors Jean Carton, Gunnar Nilsson and Paul Cornet
"Eve Révoltée", Grand Palais - Paris
"Eve Révoltée", Grand Palais - Paris