The heart of Valentina’s jewelry is to be found in the aliveness of her shapes. Valentina enjoys taking shapes from childhood and reconfiguring them as jewelry. Of course nature is eternally inspiring but, more specifically, human movement - dance - finds its way across her work.
Her shapes in sterling silver are designed around simple, pure forms, at times lending themselves as a setting for semiprecious stones. Valentina’s process includes casting, forming and “electro-forming”, a process that creates a lighter piece of jewelry without losing the tensile strength of the metal.
Valentina's studio is located in Austin, Texas.
The merging of my experience as an artist/designer, parent, and a progressive educator has led me to expand my design abilities.
Born in Venezuela in 1962, I entered the USA at seventeen for school and subsequently attended the Maine College of Art. I turned to a most scary craft: jewelry design. The encountering of high pressure flame and high speed machines quickly turned me into a bold student, if I wanted to advance. Balancing the practice of technique and design took a long term commitment.
When I applied for citizenship, the officer charged with taking my fingerprints had to try multiple times as my jewelry work had so worn them down.
I earned my Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1987, having studied metalsmithing in Florence, Italy during my senior year. I entered a master’s degree program at the Rhode Island School of Design and received my Master of Fine Arts degree in Jewelry & Light Metals in 1989. For five years I worked in the capital of the jewelry industry in Providence, R.I as the creator of distinctive forms and designs using the technique of electroforming, which brought my employer, Gem Craft, the prestige of new ideas to their market. Concurrently I kept my studio work active as an independent designer and I sold jewelry works in the Niessing Gallery in Madison Ave in New York City. After receiving my American residency, due to my skills with electroforming and design with Gem Craft, I moved to Austin, Texas in 1995 to live with my future husband. Soon I became a mom...
I see art as a philosophy in which one enters a progressive relationship a relationship that is maintained from two creative angles: how one solves a particular problem, and how one engages in an entertaining dynamic. These two characteristics of work and entertainment are what require me, as an artist, to cultivate creativity as the major factor of personal energy and growth.
My motherhood experience has relied on a foundation of life as art—changing / transforming. The work of a mother has altered my kinesthetic sensibility through the practice of empathy. My work unfolded as I learned to build the relationships with my family and, finding the curiosity to inquire further, I became certified to teach Parent Education. This process enhanced my understanding of how to relate with children as I entered their world. My vision expanded to encompass organized play for children through the experience of art.
As I strengthen the merging of these roles—artist/designer, mother, and progressive educator—I am exploring the different possibilities offered in design with its mysteries.
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