“I like the idea of seeing nature by itself in its own form. I feel very comfortable with nature when I take hikes and walks wherever I am visiting or residing. I’ve been to a place that’s very similar to Venice, Italy, when I went on vacation with my mom in Las Vegas. Cardiff is where I was born, and I visited that place in the late 70’s, when my family was leaving South Africa.
I feel more in control of my life and my emotions when I make a piece of artwork. If there is too much tension, I paint and draw while listening to natural music, sounds of the ocean, and Enya.
I am a learning disabled individual and have been since birth. I’ve been independent since age 14, and have been a self advocate for 15 years. I have been coming to the Center for Creative Works for five years.” – TO
For the past eight years, Timothy O’Donovan’s has worked in a variety of mediums and methods including graphite, watercolor, pen and ink, ceramics, pencil crayon, and intaglio printmaking. He has a diverse range of image making, from geometric abstractions to representational renderings of famous architecture. His primary focus currently is landscape, capturing both places he has traveled to and places he has heard of. O’Donovan has travelled the world many times with his family, and lived in Colorado, New Orleans, South Africa, New Zealand, and Wales.
Before he became an artist, O’Donovan worked at a vocational training center in New Orleans as a custodian, and at a restaurant as a cashier and dishwasher. He began working at Lower Merion Vocational Center as a clerical worker and custodian, and when LMVTC transitioned into Center for Creative Works in 2011 he started creating artwork for the first time. Starting with abstractions in pencil crayon, O’Donovan developed his rendering skills over a few years with different materials. His geometric abstractions are the result of his meticulous draftsmanship. This exercise in image making has had a tremendous impact on his approach and execution of his architectural and landscapes renderings. O’Donovan began focusing on landscape in 2012.
In 2017, O'Donovan recorded a full-length album of spoken word performances and the first four sections of his autobiography, which can be downloaded here:
Creative Commons, ArtYard, Frenchtown, NJ
23rd Art Ability, Bryn Mawr Rehab, Paoli, PA
Out the Door, Philadelphia History Museum, Philadelphia, PA
We're In It: Remaking the World, Haverford College, Haverford, PA
InvisAbility, Philadelphia City Hall, Philadelphia, PA
Twilight at the Gardens: Creative Sparks, Philadelphia Magic Gardens, Philadelphia, PA
SYMBIOSIS, Haverford College, Bryn Mawr, PA
NATURE IN ITS OWN FORM, Gallery 241, Wynnewood, PA
Art Ability, Bryn Mawr Rehab, Malvern, PA
Landscapes: Timothy O'Donovan, RHD Central Offices, Philadelphia, PA
Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, Art Ability; Malvern, PA
Arc of Delaware Art Festival, Neuman University, Aston, PA
Main Line Unitarian Church, Devon, PA
Material Culture: Philadelphia, PA
Illuminations, AIR Space Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
Pingle Building, St. Louis Outsider Arts Fair: St. Louis, MO
Pageant: Soloveev, Psychedelphia: Philadelphia, PA
St. Louis Outsider Arts Fairm Pingle Building, St. Louis, MO
The Big Picture, Lankenau Health Center, Wynnewood, PA
Ludington Library: Bryn Mawr, PA
Outsider Arts Fair, Center 548, New York, NY
Grounds for Sculpture, The Art of Color: Trenton, NJ
The Asian Arts Initiative: Philadelphia, PA
Outsider 1, Bluestone Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
Lewis, Alex. Outside Sound connects artists with developmental disabilities and local musicians. Philadelphia NewsWorks for WHYY / NPR. September 15, 2015.
Collections and Publications
SYMBIOSIS: Art, Science, and Community, Haverford College Press, Bryn Mawr, PA
Judge's Choice, Art Ability, 2016