Olana Janfa

Olana Janfa | Artist

Olana Janfa is a self taught artist based in Melbourne. Janfa was born in Ethiopia, emigrated to Norway as a teen and came to Australia in 2015. He began painting to connect with his culture and create a sense of home. Taking stylistic cues from traditional Ethiopian Orthodox art and African street art, Olana presents his take on the world as seen from his unique perspective. Expressive, uninhibited, and refreshingly immediate, his work is distinctive for its often humorous text captions and mix of wide eyed characters that reference sport, music and popular culture to explore themes of identity and the migrant experience. Olana mostly works with recycled timber and found materials, using acrylic, oil and pastel and has worked with brands and organisations including Nicholas Daley, Nike, Pan Macmillan, City of Melbourne, NGV , Flash Forward, Melbourne Fashion Week, City of Darebin, ASRC, Scarf, The Social Studio, and more. The OLANA X OBUS collaboration (with Melbourne fashion label Obus) was a finalist in The Design Files 2020 TDF X Laminex Design Awards.