Olivier Schwartz was born in Nogent-sur-Marne. A self-taught artist, he began his career in the early 1980s, joining in with the retro comic style introduced by artists like Yves Chaland.
He had his breakthrough when he began an association with the children's book publishers Milan and Bayard. For Milan, he made comics in cooperation with the scriptwriters Claude Ecken ('Pierre, Sophie & Robbie') and Christian Goux ('Le Testament du Docteur Zèbre') in the mid 1980s. He makes the series 'Les Enquêtes de l'Inspecteur Bayard' with Jean-Louis Fonteneau for the Bayard children's magazine Astrapi since 1988.
Schwartz's Jijé-inspired style came out well in the World War II-situated story 'Le groom vert-de-gris', in which he and scriptwriter Yann returned to the early years of the classic 'Spirou' character for the collection 'Une Aventure de Spirou et Fantasio par...' in 2009. Schwartz and Yann remained inspired by the early years of Belgian publishing house Dupuis when they began their comic about the legendary trip that comic artists Jijé, Franquin and Morris made to the USA and Mexico in the 1940s. The story, based on anecdotes by the artists themselves according to the writer, led to conflicts with the heirs however, and the book wasn't published until 2012. A second 'Spirou' album by Schwartz and Yann was published in 2014.