Art Basel

Art Basel

Pink Room created by Sadie Barnette, shown at Untitled Art Fair

If you were following along with my Instagram from this past weekend you knew I was in sunny Miami, hitting up as many art shows as possible while still soaking in some sweet sunshine. If you are unfamiliar with Art Basel, essentially it is a huge art fair that happens every year in Miami. Art Miami has spawn from Art Basel and now several huge art fairs gather in Miami for art week. All of the art at these shows is for the most part modern and contemporary, with almost endless subgenres.

I was able to attend several fairs including Pulse, Untitled, Scope, Superfine, and Basel, with Basel being by far the largest representation. With over 60,000 square feet of space housing galleries and artists from around the world. Art Basel was shoulder to shoulder packed and so much fun.

All of the fairs had very distinctive vibes, and seemed to attract very distinctive collectors, galleries, and artists. Here’s a brief synopsis of each of the fairs by my estimation.

Pulse seemed pretty laid back and made with the millennial in mind.  I really enjoyed a lot of the art at Pulse. Lots of abstract, the vibes I got was a sense of calm, with a lot of really great abstract art selections.

Untitled was interesting, there were a lot of installations and sculptural pieces, but still had a lot of abstract and contemporary work. The people in the galleries were a bit more engaging would start a conversation with passersby. This was the only place I saw this happening. Untitled had some really interesting and engaging booths.

Basel was packed, which makes sense because it was the main course of art week. Arguably these are the upper crust of galleries showing during art week. All of the offerings were very polished and with a glass of champagne in hand I muscled through, shoulder to shoulder with the hordes of collectors and visitors.  Being the fangirl that I am, I had the pleasure of seeing up close and personal the works of some of my favorite artists.

Scope felt like where all the cool kids with hang out and smoke week. In fact, as I was walking in, there was an excessively tatted and pierced girl vaping. I was painfully aware of how uncool I am when browsing scope. Scope was like a club. Neon paint, neon lights, lots of chrome, lots of 3d art, it was mostly pop and political art. Which of course has its place, I’m just not a huge fan in general. It was very loud inside, people were wearing lots of costumes, there were a lot of statements being made both artistically and fashionably.

I thought it was a joke when I went in. It was the smallest most claustrophobic space, and way too dark. It’s really a shame that the location overshadowed the art here. Hopefully they can get a better space next year.

Overall I really enjoyed my first Miami Art Week. Saw some of my art idols paintings in the flesh, met some cool people, soaked up some sunshine and left feeling full. Have you ever been to Miami Art Week? What shows should I hit up next year?

Like and share this post if you learned something new.  Follow me on Instagram @christineolmstead Pinterest @christineolmstead Facebook @ceolmstead


How to Support Artists & Small Businesses Without Spending a Penny

How to Support Artists & Small Businesses Without Spending a Penny

Photo by Tori Watson Photography, check her out here!

It’s the season for giving and the season for spending. I don’t know about you, but when I do my Christmas shopping and find gifts to give I’m always left feeling bad that I can’t support all the small businesses and charities that my friends own and run.

There are so many artists, makers, and small businesses that I want to support every year, but it can’t always happen for financial reasons, or maybe I just don’t have the right person to give their gift to. So this year, I’m creating a support guide.

A support guide is different than a gift guide because you can support any business owner, or any artist using these methods WITHOUT SPENDING A SINGLE PENNY! You want to know how? Keep scrolling….

  1. Like their Content
    Due to algorithm changes that we have all experienced, likes and comments are more valuable than ever. The truth is that networks like Instagram or Facebook, don’t serve a post to all of someone’s followers. They serve a post based on how much engagement it gets within the first hour. One of the kindest things you can do for a small business or artist is to “like” their content to boost their post.
  2. Comment on their Content
    The same engagement algorithms apply when people comment on a post. When someone comments and likes a Facebook or Instagram post, those algorithms will serve it to more people. It doesn’t have to be a long comment, just a word of encouragement or something you like about the post will suffice. Get your double tap on!
  3. Share a Post
    Repost a photo and tag the business in it (always ask permission first). Share a blog post, shop page, or photo on your own social channels, making sure you tag, and link back to them. Re-sharing the content of artists or small businesses makes a huge impact on business. Even if you can’t afford to spend more on gifts, you never know if one of your friends may enjoy the products or services offered by that small business you are supporting.
  4. Re-pin Their Pins
    I’m constantly pinning images on Pinterest from the websites and content my fellow makers and small biz friends have created. Repining an image might not seem like much, but every re-pin counts. Pinterest is such a helpful tool to support small biz, so much so that Pinterest, on average, drives 3 times more traffic than any other paid service, or social media platform. For my business personally, Pinterest drives 85% of my web traffic and sales. Becoming a pinning ally for your favorite brands goes further than you know!
  5. Write a Blog
    If you have your own blog, consider writing a blog post roundup of some of your favorite makers and small businesses that you want to support. Always link to their website and/or social media links. This helps their SEO and will further legitimize their business and website in searching engine results!
  6. Send a Note of Encouragement
    It doesn’t have to be an actual note, it could be a comment on a post, a direct message, or an email. For many small business owners, this is our busy season where we are working overtime to satisfy our clients and make sure everyone receives what they ordered. The holiday season can be exhausting, frustrating, and downright discouraging sometimes when you’re an artist or small biz. Sending a small business owner, a quick note saying, “You’re doing a great job!” Simply telling them one thing you like about what they do or the way they run their business can go a long way. Spread that cheer, far and wide!

There are so many ways to support artists, makers, and small businesses without breaking the bank. It’s time to get over the guilt of not being able to support everyone and take charge by supporting them in the ways you can! Can you think of other ways to support small businesses without spending a penny? Share your ideas below in the comments or send me a message!

If you learned something or liked this post, share it with a friend or repost it to your feeds. Follow me on Instagram @christineolmstead Pinterest @christineolmstead Facebook @ceolmstead

Spruce Up Your Home Before the Holidays!

Spruce Up Your Home Before the Holidays!

Nothing says adding holiday sparkle like freshening up the art on your walls. Let’s be real, most people hang art on their walls, and leave it for years, even decades. Nothing dates a room faster than old, outdated decor. This year spice up your living room without breaking the bank.

Piece of Cheer 5 Framed Art Print, $72


Shop these art prints all under $100 and get them delivered and installed before your mother-in-law and all the guests come over. These modern abstract art prints are called “Pieces of Cheer,” made for the holidays in mind. Don’t worry about creating the perfect gallery wall, it’s already been thought out for you. Simply order the framed prints with your choice of frame and in the size you need. Once they arrive hanging is a breeze.

Piece of Cheer 4 Framed Print, $72

These prints are high quality prints on paper. They come framed in your choice of frame color and style and sizes from small to large. This year, I’m tearing down the prints I printed off from my home printer and framed myself in favor of professional, affordable, high-quality framed prints. This project literally took 15 minutes in total. Once I ordered these three prints in the size and frame color that I wanted, I got them the next week and hung them in ten minutes. This is the fastest update I’ve ever made to a living room, for such a big impact.

Piece of Cheer 3 Framed Art Print, $72


Take the stress out of a gallery wall and order one ready to go. No need to worry if these pieces will go together or not, they’ve been hand made to coordinate. This is the easiest home decor decision you’ll make all year, maybe in your whole life.

Click the image of the print, to choose your size and frame and start planning the room you plan on updating before the holidays! Happy Holiday Prep to you!

Complete Inventory of Coalesce

Complete Inventory of Coalesce

It’s a question I’ve been hearing all month! “When can I see all the piece you made for this show?” Wonder no more! In this post I have a complete inventory of my works from this show. Click the photo or the link to see if the piece is still available! If you have any questions regarding any of these pieces, please do not hesitate to email me at

To learn about the inspiration of these pieces read in last weeks blog post, here!

The biggest piece in this collection is 4 ft x 7ft. This piece is acrylic and 24k gold leaf on stretched canvas, this piece was painted on raw canvas. This piece is called “Don’t Stop, but Slow Down” Available. Click here for more details.

The second largest piece is 6’x4′ acrylic and gold leaf on primed canvas. This piece is called “Don’t Stop Seeking the Light” Available. More info is here.Don't_Stop_Seeking_The_Light_web

This next piece is one of my personal favorites from this show. This piece was one that I struggled with, made some big mistakes on, but came out loving it more than I could have anticipated. This piece is 46″x46″ acrylic and gold leaf on raw canvas. This piece is called “Don’t Stop Making Mistakes” Sold. 

This next piece really has to be seen in person. In order to see and appreciate all the metallic gold layers. This piece has such a depth, even though I created I feel like I notice something new each time. This piece is called “Don’t Stop Changing” it is 36″x48″ acrylic and gold leaf on canvas, Available. More info available here.  Don't_Stop_Changing_web

“Don’t Stop Being Gentle” #1 and #2 are a perfect little pair. These two made the perfect pair with their rich orange colors and pearlescent shine. These two cuties were snatch up super quickly at the show. Both of these pieces are 18″x24″ acrylic and 24k gold leaf on canvas. Sold.

The next two pieces are another perfect pair. These pieces sparkle and shine in every light. The gold, pearl, green green and burnt salmon colors mingle together to bring bright and deeply texture pieces. These pieces are called “Don’t Stop Blooming” #1 and #2 of these pieces are 36″x36″ acrylic and 24k gold leaf on canvas, Available now!

The last piece on canvas is light, airy, and soft. This piece is heavenly. This piece is called “Don’t Stop Healing” it is 40″x40″ acrylic and gold leaf on raw canvas.  Available now on my website, HERE!

There are also a large variety of framed prints available at the gallery, even some unframed works on paper. These pieces are a variety of sizes, and a few of them are claimed, but they’re perfect for mixing and matching a gallery wall or a perfect Christmas gift to yourself or a friend. These works are acrylic, ink, and 24k gold on paper. Browse all the works on paper that are still available here!

It is such an honor to share these works with you, if you missed the story behind these works I encourage you to read last week’s blog post here. If you have any questions about any of the works in the post or would like more information or photos please feel free to email me at If you liked what you saw in this post, share it with your friends. Follow me on Instagram @christineolmstead Pinterest @christineolmstead Facebook @ceolmstead

“Coalesce” a Duo Show

“Coalesce” a Duo Show

Last week I shared about our opening reception of my latest show ‘Coalesce’ my duo show with Marta Staudinger. This week I want to give you some more insight into what this show is about and how it came to be.staudinger_olmstead_Coalesce4NAKED ROTHKO 6ft. x 4ft” by Marta Staudinger

It is my honor to be exhibiting alongside Marta Staudinger. She’s an artist, curator, and gallery owner and lectures for the Smithsonians in her spare time. I respect not only her work, and technique, but also her dedication to her business and worth ethic.Don't_Stop_Seeking_The_Light_webDon’t Stop Seeking the Light, 6ftx4ft  by Christine Olmstead

Marta and I got into contact about a year ago when I submitted to an open call at the gallery that she owns, Latela Art Gallery. After submitting to her gallery Marta offered me a solo show, which was a huge shock and just blew me away with gratitude. The show was to be in July 2018. But before my show she and I got the chance to work together on a corporate commission. She and I both created pieces for a corporate space in Tysons Corner. This was our first experience working together. When it came time to hang these large paintings in this corporate space, the person who hung our works was Bill Byrne, co-owner of The Byrne Gallery.DE NUEVO ON CLOUD 9, 58″x46″ by Marta Staudinger

Marta hosted my solo-show at her beautiful gallery, Latela, “The Divide” in the summer of 2018, which Bill and Susan of the Byrne Gallery were kind enough to attend.Dont_Stop_Making_Mistakes_webDon’t Stop Making Mistakes, 48″x48″ Sold, by Christine Olmstead

Bill owns The Byrne Gallery with his sister, Susan, after seeing the work Marta and I did together for the corporate commission and with my show, they generously offered a show to us for October 2018. They really let us have complete creative control, which you don’t often get when working with a gallery. They let us pick our sizes, colors and the way the work would be shown.marta_olmstead_CoalesceON CLOUD 9, 58×46 in, by Marta Staudinger

After Marta and I accepted their invitation to show, we got to work. We went to the gallery, measured walls and picked out the sizes of canvases that each of us would tackle. We then selected our color palette and narrowed down our palette to about 6 colors we wanted to work within. Throughout the creation process we would chat on the phone, share techniques, struggles and joys that we were experiencing while creating these pieces.  Together we created over 75 pieces for this show, including stretched works on canvas and works on paper.Don't_Stop_Changing_webDon’t Stop Changing, 36″x48″, by Christine Olmstead

The end product was better than I even imagined. It is so amazing what happens when two artists have the same parameters and color palette and create two completely different, yet cohesive bodies of work. This was a rare treat as an artist to experience this kind of freedom and collaboration.staudinger_olmstead_6TURQUOISE PEARL FROST, 48″x36″ by Marta Staudinger

We chose the name for the show based on the fact that Marta and I have come together over and over again for different collaborations and business opportunities that having a show together seemed like the most natural next step. Coalesce was a word we had talked about but hadn’t finalized until… I was in Richmond a couple of weeks before the opening of our show and I went to a brewery. The brewery only had like 4 beers on tap and one of them was called “Coalesce” it just seemed serendipitous. We chose the name “Coalesce” on the spot!  This show is about us coming together as artists to create one united body of work. I hope that Marta and I get the chance to exhibit together again!DS_But_Slow_Down_webDon’t Stop but Slow Down, 7ftx4ft, by Christine Olmstead

Thanks for reading about our fun group collaboration/great art experiment. Like and share it with your friends if you liked it or learned something. All pieces are available at The Byrne Gallery, stop by now through november 4.

“Coalesce” Middleburg Reception: Recap

“Coalesce” Middleburg Reception: Recap

I have been looking forward to this show at The Byrne Gallery in Middleburg, VA for months! This show has been a lot of hard work for both Marta Staudinger and myself. The two of us were asked by The Byrne Gallery to create a body of work together for this show. It is rare that a gallery will ask you to do a show, but on top of that, the let us have complete creative control. I can’t even describe to you what kind of generous opportunity this was.

Middleburg_Art_Byrne_GALLERYFrom Left: Bill Byrne, Christine Olmstead, Marta Staudinger, and Susan Byrne

Next week I will share about our creative processes, and what it took to get this show up on the wall, but in the meantime, here’s all the info about what you missed at our reception last weekend.

Last weekend we hosted the opening reception of the show in Middleburg at the Byrne Gallery. If you weren’t there, let me tell you that you seriously missed out. It was an evening to remember. Throughout the course of the evening we saw a few hundred people trickle through. There were the faces of friends and family, collectors old and new, and new faces from the local Middleburg scene.


With champagne in hand the evening was a night of good conversation, lots of laughs and an upbeat atmosphere. The mix of Marta’s paintings and mine in the same space bring such a synergy and a warm glow. I can’t think of a more enjoyable evening spent with some of the loveliest people.

If you missed out on the reception do not worry! You can join is this weekend, October 20 from 2-6pm in Middleburg, at the Byrne Gallery for an artist talk. Pop by whenever and we will be there to show you around. The show will be up till November 4! See these pieces in person before they’re gone.


If you liked this post, please share it with your friends and family! Follow me on Instagram @christineolmstead. Follow Marta, on her website, on Instagram @martastaudinger.To read Marta’s thoughts and experience with this show, read her blog post here!