Olds studied at the University of Minnesota, the Minneapolis School
of Art and the Art Student’s League. She was a member of the American
Artists Congress and the Artists League of America. She was on the
original board of control and faculty of the American Artists School.
She was involved in the New York City WPA as a graphic artist from
1935-1940 and participated in the silkscreen unit which helped to
develop serigraphy as a fine art medium. She was the first woman awarded
a Guggenheim fellowship. Her work was exhibited at the Kansas Art
Insitute, Philadelphia Artists Alliance and the Philadelphia Print
Club. She participated in the PM magazine competition “Artist as Reporter”
1940. Her work is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art,
Brooklyn Museum, Philadelphia Museum of Art, New York Public Library,
the San Fransisco Museum of Art and many others. She was author /
illustrator of The Big Fire which was chosen as a Jr. Literary
Guild Selection in 1945.