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Olivia Nogueira-Wheaton is a second-year transfer student, who is pursuing a BFA in Printmaking. Here’s more from Olivia:

Originally from a small mountain town in Colorado, New York seemed like the fastest way to get as close to the pulsing vain of the arts while still being near one side of the family. Father, a photographer and collector… The east coast felt familiarly cold, yet two years at Parsons was more than enough. The lack of space to print drove me to the golden coast where Mother—a filmmaker, clothing designer, and SFAI alum (BFA Film)—suggested I try the spacious studios at SFAI. I now curate and organize a gallery on campus, and represent my department in student government.

Images: (1) Olivia Nogueira-Wheaton, Putti I, II, III, IV, 2019, etching, black ink on paper, 2x4 inches. (2) Olivia Nogueira-Wheaton, Full Composition, 2019, etching, black ink on paper, 9 x 9 inches.


The big plan is to run my own press or publication and perhaps gallery after pursuing a masters program. I believe the press is where public voice was born, and print is where the voice of the public will stay alive. My greatest and most constant influencers are Jose Guadalupe Posada, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Joel-Peter Witkin; and also, current artists Jacob Ovgren and Jason Dill come to mind.


Image: Dulce Mori Voluptatem, 2019, a collaboration between Olivia Nogueira-Wheaton and Marisol Laura, screenprint on paper, 11 x 17 inches.

My work deals with the iconic image of the Putti/Cherub. Infant boys, often winged, accompanying powerful people or gods, emphasizing class and stature or sexuality in religion or royalty. We see them framing famous figures in traditional fine art paintings and frescoes. Now we see them on a hallmark holiday or a sex toy commercial, but never the center of attention. The compositions that the small bodies create by omitting the central figure allows for a different meaning. These cast-out angels (not included in the hierarchy of angels) have become overused images in popular culture. I seek to re-contextualize the international symbol of Cherub and give them a contemporary place in fine art.


Image: Olivia Nogueira-Wheaton, Putti Off-Duty, 2018, etching, ink on paper, 2 x 2 inches.

You can see Olivia’s work in Zine-o-phobia, on view through February 27, 2020 in the Print Department’s Stairwell Gallery at SFAI—Chestnut Street Campus.


Top Image: Olivia Nogueira-Wheaton, Putti I, II, III, IV, 2019, etchings, black ink on paper, 2 x 4 inches.
All images courtesy the artist.

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