Artist Michael Olszewski creates quiet, intimate works that invite contemplation.

Using textile techniques or watercolor, artist Michael Olszewski creates quiet, intimate works that invite contemplation. Inspired by the terrain of northern Ireland or his interior landscape, he captures a wistful sense of melancholy. In his piece Aftermath—a recent gift to The Mint Museum—hand-dyed silk, cotton and wool are appliquéd in a fiber-art collage in which the gossamer, transparent and thick textures are meticulously hand stitched into the ground cloth.

Olszewski’s home studio often looks like a scientific lab. He experiments and develops dyestuffs from a variety of natural and synthetic sources, tests new recipes, and mixes and cooks his concoctions. Olszewski’s knowledge of capillary action vis-a-vis various fibers, as well as his expertise in resist dye techniques, result in the subtle, soothing, somber tones of his oeuvre.

Aftermath will be included in a future Mint exhibition: Craft in the Laboratory: The Science of Making Things.

—Annie Carlano, Senior Curator of Craft, Design & Fashion