|Denis Olsen has been an artist his entire life. His first public recognition was when he earned the First National Award which brought the Gold Metal, State of California Gold Key & Honorable Mention from Scholastic Arts Magazine and Bullock Wilshire to Corona Del Mar High School. At the time, that high school had been newly constructed, and Denis was in the third graduating class
Summers during high school he opened "Rembrandt Studios" on Marine Avenue on Balboa Island. In 1961, Denis was 15 years old and was determined to sell his artwork on hand-painted T-shirts. He had his mother drive him to a sign shop to buy a used airbrush and a small compressor, then to J.C. Penney's to buy T-shirts and sweat shirty. Every summer throughout high school, he had his T-shirt shop and during the winters he parked cars at the "Five Crowns Restaurant."
After high school, he was accepted to Chouinard School of Art and attended for two years. Upon the death of Mrs. Chouinard, the school was taken over by Walt Disney. From this school came the best artists, he said. In 1969 since assuming control of the art school, it was moved to Disney Studios. When Cal ARts in Valencia was finished being built, the school was moved there.
In 1967, Denis' grandfather gave him a unique and adventurous gift: a trip around the world, which lasted over a year. While in Paris, Denis studied art and French.
When Denis returned to the States, he was hire at KCOP as their Art Director.
After working at KCOP, Denis rounded off his skills by completing a two-year Sign Graphics course at Los Angeles Trade Tech.
From then on, he was never out of work. He started at CBS for five years and so on...
38 years later, he is now the Curator for the art gallery of the Art Directors Guild, I.A.T.S.E., Local 800, which represents over 2000 artists in the Entertainment Industry.
Gallery 800 (www.Gallery800.com) is a unique venue for union members to showcase their personal art to the public. The gallery is a culmination of Denis' efforts to encourage the artists to unite in their artistic pursuits. From the first art show he organized in 2004 till now, the shows are hugely successful and eagerly anticipated by all those who have participated and those who will soon participate. It's a great movement that Denis has created. It benefits and encourages the better efforts of all who participates.
Click here to Meet Denis Olsen