As a young child growing up in Buenos Aires, Argentica, Valeria Feliú always knew she wanted to be an artist—and whether it was drawing, painting, ceramics, or photography, Valeria never stopped creating.
After getting her degree in Visual Communications and living for a time in Sydney, Australia (where she worked in architecture while developing her artistic career on the side) Valeria moved back to Argentina as a full-time painter. Her current work explores the art of contemporary portraiture, where she uses her incredible skills rendering fabric, skin tone, and expression to create a beautiful tapestry of art from each sitter.
Portraits of a Thought
In reference to her Portraits of a Thought series, Valeria writes, “What we see is a face, but what we really are is behind it and nobody can see it, those are our thoughts.”
A perfect example of that is this first painting, entitled, It’s all how you see it darling!
Here we see Valeria’s exquisite painting abilities firsthand—from the perfectly smooth skin of the model to the loosely impressionistic blue dress and abstracted floral headdress.
Those bright swirls of fuchsia and red (and gold and green) frame the sitter’s face and draw the viewer’s gaze upward, yet even with those vibrant colors in play, it’s the woman’s eyes that form the true focal point of the painting.
Clear, gray-blue pupils catch the light and echo the colors of the fabric gathered in the bottom corner. We can’t help but be drawn to those eyes, as they are framed by every part of the composition.
But try as we might to see into them, the woman’s gaze is focused just above and to the right of the viewer, creating a moment of not-quite-connection—almost as if time has stopped, and we can only wait and see what happens next.
Homage of Muses and Inspiration, Resignifying the Contemporary Portrait
In her current solo exhibit in Salta, Argentina, Valeria’s latest work is on display, including this second painting, entitled Punk glam dream wild.
With that high-contrast, detailed fabric, intricate patterns (in front and behind the sitter) and an almost “cut-out” style of composition, I can’t help but think of some of Gustav Klimt’s paintings from the early 20th century.
The similarities end, however, as soon as we consider the model herself.
Valeria is interested not only in the way that the model looks, but also in the thoughts and personalities she can explore through her incredibly well-crafted portraits.
For a look at many more beautiful, contemporary portraits by Valeria Feliú, please visit her website today.
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