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Chad M. Olsen (b. 1983)

Chad Michael Olsen is an artist of abstract minimalism that explore textures and color palettes as a way to communicate emotions. When painting, he often finds himself working to capture the atmospheres of nature and the emotions from being in these places. For him, being in nature is a solitary experience—one he can only truly share with others through his paintings.


Influenced by artists such as Josef Albers, Agnes Martin, Joan Mitchell, Mark Rothko, Robert Ryman, J.M.W. Turner, and the artists of the Hudson River School, Olsen has drawn from minimalism and the sublime as a way of communicating through painting. His paintings are a balance of both the serenity and harshness of nature; areas of dramatic contrast are often tempered with a wash-like textural effect that creates a dream-like atmosphere. The overall effect is marriage of intensity and calm.


His professional art career began in Nebraska in 2010 after studying painting at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln under Aaron Holz and Keith Jacobshagen, followed by several years of living and working in New York City. While there, he sought solace in the natural world, psychologically returning to the Nebraska grasslands as a form of meditation and as a prevalent theme in his work. In 2017, he returned to Nebraska where he currently resides and maintains a studio in Kearney.


Olsen’s work demonstrates a range as a romantic, yet abstract, landscape artist and a minimalist. Each painting reveals a new approach to textures, an evolving color palette, or compositional design.


Most recently, Olsen has expanded his use of transparency film materials to include acetate and Dura-Lar. These new materials have allowed Olsen to experiment with scale and composition—the culmination of these efforts reflected in his most recent work and solo exhibitions.


2023 Benefit Art Auction Exhibition

Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, Omaha, 2023

Post Facade - a series of short films

Maple St. Construct, Omaha, 2023

Can we speak in flowers

Kiechel Fine Art, Lincoln, 2022​

Who's Next?: Agrarian Artists under 40

Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art, David City, 2022

2021 Nebraska Artist Biennel

Gallery 1516, Omaha, 2021

Never Really Gone

Kiechel Fine Art, Lincoln, 2020

Best of Nebraska

Kiechel Fine Art, Lincoln, 2019

What's Nebraska like, babe?

Kiechel Fine Art, Lincoln, 2018

Homeland - over the edge of the world

Assurity Life Insurance, Lincoln, 2016

25th Annual Miniatures Show

Abend Gallery, Denver, 2015

Transparency + Nostalgia 

Spativm Gallery, Lincoln, 2015

Ballet X Benefit Exhibition

Bridgette Mayer Gallery, Philadelphia, 2014

Transparency + Landscape

Spativm Gallery, Lincoln, 2013

Ballet X Benefit Exhibition

Bridgette Mayer Gallery, Philadelphia, 2013


Spativm Gallery, Lincoln, 2012

The Tulip Series

Almanac Gallery, Hoboken, 2011


Spativm Gallery, Lincoln, 2011


Jean R. Faulkner Memorial Award/ Lincoln - 2010

Contact / Phone: 402-202-2976

Kearney, Nebraska

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